Facebook is the latest new media company to show interest in the popular Twenty20 cricket league, joining others such as Twitter, Amazon and Reliance Jio, highlighting the changing media landscape in the country.
The interested parties would vie for television rights for the IPL in the Indian subcontinent until 2027, digital rights in the same region until 2022 and media rights for the rest of the world until 2022 as well. The last date for submitting the bid is October 25.
“With the global trends of showcasing content on multiple platforms becoming increasingly important, TV, internet and mobile rights are up for grabs together this time,” said Anurag Thakur, president of the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI), in a press statement.
Facebook “made the payment today (for the documents)”, said one of the two people, a senior official at the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) who asked not to be named.
The documents are priced at $10,000.
The television rights are currently held by Sony Pictures Network India (SPNI) and expire after the 2017 IPL season. Star India is in possession of the digital rights and the overseas media rights, except in the UK and the US, all of which also expire after IPL 2017.
BCCI will award the television rights for 10 years starting from 2018 and digital media rights for five years. The competitive bidding process will close on 25 October and its results will be announced the same day.
On why the IPL television rights for the Indian subcontinent were awarded for ten years, BCCI chief executive Rahul Johri had said the board wanted to replicate the current cycle, which gave SPNI the rights from 2008 to 2017.
The Internet and mobile rights were last awarded to Novi Digital Entertainment Pvt. Ltd, a unit of Star India, for a period of three years to 2017. In 2009, Sony paid $1.63 billion for IPL’s television broadcasting rights.