BCCI set for billion-dollar deal in media rights war

New Delhi: India’s cricket board is set to break the billion dollar barrier in its new media rights deal after two days of intense bidding between rival firms, which are scheduled to end Thursday.

Bidding hit $926 million Wednesday in the fight between Star India, Sony and Reliance Jio for television and digital rights for the Indian cricket team and domestic championships from 2018 to 2023.

The deal does not include the multi-billion dollar Indian Premier League (IPL).

“The bidding mark has reached 60.32 billion rupees and it will certainly be a landmark deal,” a senior Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) official told AFP on condition of anonymity.

Rupert Murdoch’s Star paid 38.5 billion rupees ($592 million) for the rights to broadcast India’s home matches from 2012-2018.

Star also won the media rights for BCCI’s lucrative IPL Twenty20 tournament with a record $2.55 billion bid last year. The deal also stands for five years from 2018.

Initially six companies, including Facebook and Google, entered the fray to bid for international and domestic matches in India from April 15 2018 to March 31 2023.