Women’s IPL: Viacom18 wins WIPL media rights for Rs 951 crore, will pay BCCI Rs 7.09 crore per match

Viacom18 secured the Women’s IPL media rights for a period of five years (2023-27) at an auction in Mumbai on Monday. Viacom has committed Rs 951 crore, which translates to a per match value of Rs 7.09 crore.

Published : Jan 16, 2023 12:04 IST , MUMBAI

The inaugural women’s IPL will take place in March this year.
The inaugural women’s IPL will take place in March this year. | Photo Credit: Sportzpics

The inaugural women’s IPL will take place in March this year. | Photo Credit: Sportzpics

Viacom 18 has been awarded the media rights for Rs. 951 crore for the first five editions of the Women’s Indian Premier League (WIPL), set to start in March. The media rights bids were opened at a hotel here on Monday in the presence of all the bidders.

Contrary to the e-auction adopted for the Indian Premier League media rights sale last year, the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) had adopted the conventional closed-bid process. Viacom 18’s bid is understood to have been almost 10 times more than the Rs. 98 crore bid by Disney-Star, the only other broadcaster that submitted the document.

Rs. 951 crore will mean that the average value per game has been deemed at Rs. 7.09 crore, slightly higher than Rs. 5 crore as expected value as revealed to Sportstar by BCCI insiders ahead of the bidding. The WIPL is set to feature 22 games in a five-team format for the first three years. Should the BCCI add a sixth team, the next two editions - in 2026 and 2027 - will see 34 games being played.

Reiterating the women’s IPL as part of the BCCI’s “commitment” to the women’s game, secretary Jay Shah said the media rights sale amount indicates a step in the rightr direction.

“Today we have taken one big leap. The broadcasters play a key role in taking the game to a wider audience and their active interest in the league is a clear indication that the WIPL is headed in the right direction,” Shah wrote in a statement. “The per-match valuation of Rs. 7.09 crore is something that has never previously been registered for a women’s game.”

Should the BCCI follow the same central revenue model that was adopted for the first 10 years of the IPL, the team owners are guaranteed Rs. 30 crore each from the central revenue pool.

The owners of the five franchises will be revealed on January 25 after due diligence of the winning bidders. It is understood that almost all the existing 10 IPL franchise owners, along with half a dozen corporate giants, have submitted bids for owning a WIPL franchise.

Once the franchises are awarded, the focus will shift to the player auction, likely to be held in early February. The WIPL’s inaugural edition is likely to be played in Mumbai and Navi Mumbai from March 6 to 26.

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