Sunday, December 3, 2023

Sony bags the SLC rights for four years

Sony Sports has retained the global rights of Sri Lanka Cricket (SLC). It outbid Disney Star in a two-way fight for the four-year property which kicks in from April this year. There was no other participant in the bidding process that concluded on March 1. Viacom 18, which briefly mulled the idea of taking part, did not eventually participate.

The exact amount of the deal is not yet been revealed but it is believed to be less than the value of the previous cycle, which was close to $ 23 million. The apparent depreciation in the rights is because of a fewer number of India games which drive the value of a cricket property globally, including for the International Cricket Council (ICC) games.

As previously reported by Cricbuzz, there are only eight India games – three T20I and three ODIs in 2024 and two Tests in 2026 — in the cycle between April 2023 and March 2027. But SLC is confident of an addition of six more games at some stage during the next four years, which means the value may go up proportionally. In total there are 56 home international games for Sri Lanka in the next FTP.

An SLC official refused to confirm or deny the decision stating that they would make the announcement after the legal team has gone through all the documents. The official also revealed that his board will undertake the tendering process for domestic market and production services in the coming weeks.

The SLC tender comes in the midst of plans by two major boards to go to the market with their own rights and one of them is the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI). The other one is Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) which also apparently plans to issue a tender. The BCCI tender, expected during the next couple of months, of course, is eagerly awaited in the industry as it is one of the biggest properties in the world, bigger than that of the ICC’s.

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