Three companies - Star India, Sony Pictures Network India (SPN) and Reliance Jio are now embroiled in an intense bid war for the coveted rights which include 102 global matches across 190 days in the 2018-23 cycle. Star India had bought the global consolidated rights for the Indian Premier League for Rs 16,347.50 crore previous year.
Sony India, Star India and Reliance Jio are the three bidders still in the hunt with the auction set to continue on Wednesday.
The BCCI brass is now hoping the bids would breach the Rs 7000 crore mark, resulting in windfall earnings for the cricket body.
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Once the bidding began at 2pm IST on Tuesday, the BCCI tweeted an update with an initial top bid of INR 4176 crore for the GCR category; subsequent higher bids were INR 4201.20 cr, INR 4244 cr, INR 4303 cr, INR 4328.25 cr and INR 4442 cr.
Sony, which had the IPL rights from 2008 to 2017, then went ahead and bought the rights for England and Australian cricket, taking their tally to seven global cricket boards. "We don't know who has the top bid but the pattern indicates that all three are still in the race if you see the bid amounts", a senior BCCI official, who is tracking the auction, told PTI today. If not, the individual bids - India television+global digital and India digital rights will be deemed winners.
Star, Sony and Jio are expected to compete hard for the TV broadcast rights along with Yupp TV while Facebook and Google will be battle for the Digital Rights Package.
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The BCCI will auction the media rights in three main sections in the form of Digital Rights Package of the Rest of the World XI (ROW), the Indian sub-continent digital rights package and joint rights package along with Global TV rights.
The BCCI is looking at the sale of media rights from April 2018 to March 2023.
The online auction will now resume on Wednesday at 11.00 AM from the same stage. At present, the BCCI was getting Rs 43 crore per match based on the previous TV rights.
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The deal does not include the multi-billion dollar Indian Premier League (IPL).