Reliance-backed Viacom18 takes home the complete media rights for Women’s IPL for the next five years. The broadcasting giant has committed ₹951 crore for its winning bid, which means that the value for the first-ever IPL for women will be ₹7.09 crore per match.

Jay Shah, Secretary for the Board of Control in Cricket in India, said, “After pay equity, today’s bidding for media rights for Women’s IPL marks another historic mandate. It’s a big and decisive step for the empowerment of women’s cricket in India, which will ensure participation of women from all ages.”

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However, the money fetched by Women’s IPL pales in comparison to the corresponding auction for the men’s IPL media rights. 2023-27 media rights for men’s IPL was ₹48,390 crore, nearly 50 times higher than that of Women’s IPL. Viacom had bagged the digital rights for men’s IPL 2023-27 for ₹20,500 crore.

The next key auction to look out of will be the auction for women IPL teams. The IPL for women will feature a bidding war among at least eight of the 10 IPL clubs from the men’s league. The franchises and winning cities for the Women’s IPL are anticipated to be announced by the BCCI on January 25 when it opens the sealed bids.

Ajimon Francis, Managing Director, Brand Finance India, said, “The ₹900-crore central pool which has been generated will be sufficient to garner interest from franchise owners who will now see sizeable returns on investment.” The payment committed by the broadcaster goes into the IPL central pool which is then divided as revenues among the participating teams.

Francis also added that Viacom18 has scored a good deal especially as Women’s IPL has begun to draw major interest from fans who see Indian women garner accolades on the international cricketing stage. “Viacom18 is keeping a keen eye on all major entertainment properties in the market which will draw viewers. Women’s IPL is one piece of that portfolio for the company,” he added

The base price for the inaugural auction ahead of the WIPL has been divided into five categories from ₹10 lakh to ₹50 lakh. The deadline for registration for the auction is January 26.

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