The standalone brand value of the Indian Premier League (IPL) is pegged at US$3.2 billion in 2023, up by 80 per cent from $1.8 billion in 2022 as per estimates of Houlihan Lokey, Inc. (NYSE: HLI), a global investment bank. The business enterprise value of the IPL is estimated at $15.4 billion, up 80 per cent from $8.5 billion in 2022 on the back of the latest media rights deal with Viacom18 and Disney Star.

According to the report, the T20 league’s media rights have grown “at a phenomenal” CAGR of 18 per cent from 2008 to 2023. “When the IPL’s broadcasting fee is compared with other professional leagues in the world on a per-match basis, the IPL fares well above the likes of the National Basketball Association (NBA), the English Premier League (EPL), and the Bundesliga and is second only to the National Football League (NFL),” it noted.

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The report ranks Chennai Super Kings as the most valuable franchise at $212 million, growing 45 per cent y-o-y. CSK is ranked No. 1 in both brand ranking and business enterprise value ranking, it added. 

Royal Challengers Bangalore ranks second in terms of brand value at $195 million and saw the highest incremental brand value rise in percentage terms (y-o-y 103 per cent). Mumbai Indians is ranked third with a 2023 brand value of $190 million, up 34.8 per cent. KKR is ranked fourth ($$181 million) and Delhi Capitals was ranked fifth with a brand value of $133 million.

“Created on the American style of franchise-based systems of hiring players, the IPL has established itself as a hugely lucrative sports league, along similar lines as the NFL and the NBA,” commented Harsh Talikoti, Senior Vice President, Corporate Valuation Advisory Services at Houlihan Lokey.

“Besides the exponential growth in brand and business enterprise valuation of the IPL and the franchisees, it is interesting to note the prominent shift towards acceptance of digital platforms for sports consumption. Viacom18’s strategic push towards promoting digital viewership in India has undeniably reignited the much-needed excitement surrounding the IPL. This shift is evident in the remarkable viewership numbers witnessed during the current season on Viacom18’s OTT platform, JioCinema. However, Disney Star’s television viewing numbers were also very encouraging this year, achieving record levels,” he added.