At least 10 players are in the race to acquire the media rights for the Indian Premier League for 2023-2027. The mock auction conducted by the Board of Cricket Control of India (BCCI), ahead of the final auction on June 12, gives clear indication of the names in the fray for India’s biggest sporting property.

The list includes the top national broadcasters — Zee , Disney Star, Sony and Viacom 18. Big tech firms Amazon India and Google India are also expected to participate. Fantasy cricket platform, Dream 11, and home-grown streaming platform MX Player are the other potential bidders. Global entities bidding for the rest of the world media rights are likely to be Sky Sports (UK), and the South African company Super Sport.

Only entities who had purchased the bid documents released by BCCI in March were eligible to take part in the mock auction.

Soaring base price

BCCI has set the base price for the much-anticipated sports property at a whopping ₹33,000 crore for all four categories (broadcast rights for Indian subcontinent, digital rights for Indian subcontinent, non exclusive package digital and rest of the world broadcast and digital rights) put together. Financial services firm, Elara Capital predicted that the media rights will be sold for anywhere between ₹50,000 and ₹60,000 crore.

As streaming continues to gain momentum, and broadcasters face challenges from big tech for digital rights, the digital category is expected to go for a premium price.

“Expect digital to see premiums of 100 per cent over the current base (price), while TV premiums of 40 per cent,” said the report by Elara Capital. “Based on these premiums, the share of digital might rise to 50 per cent in IPL media rights. We anticipate 6 per cent and 35 per cent revenue CAGR in FY23E-28E for TV and digital, respectively,” the report noted.

According to Elara , one-third of Star’s revenue is IPL-led (TV + digital). “If Star wins IPL rights, this revenue contribution will augment to 40 per cent as digital growth will accelerate. As per our estimates, 70 per cent of Star India’s advertising-based video on demand revenue is IPL-led, with subscription video on demand revenue largely following suit.”