Since its inception in 2008, IPL has always provided BCCI with a huge chunk of money. It is considered the world’s most lucrative T20 league. The brand value of IPL has also seen it getting compared to various sporting leagues across the globe.
Last week, the league’s growth took many by surprise after it garnered ₹48,390 crores across television and digital media sales for the 2023-27 cycle. For TV, Star won the bid while the Viacom18 acquired rights for the digital media.
Viacom18 bought the digital for Rs 23,758 crores and it also won the bid for Australia, South Africa and United Kingdom rights. On the other hand, Star India won TV rights for Rs 23,575 crore along with Times Internet, which got the rights to the Middle East North Africa, the United States and the Rest of the World.
Sharing on thoughts on the same, former IPL chairman Lalit Modi on Saturday (June 18) said the media rights valuation will double again in the next cycle.
"It is the fan base that has done it (increase IPL's valuation). I have always said that in three or four years it will double. The price of IPL will continue to double. If you look at all my interviews from 2008, I said that IPL value will double in terms of media rights. It has gone up by 98 per cent from the last cycle. From the last cycle to this cycle is 98 per cent and I am telling you going forward in the next cycle, it will double again," Modi told NDTV in an exclusive chat.
"It will definitely overtake and I have always said IPL will become No. 1 sports league sooner than later. It all depends on the innovation for the OTT platforms, the digital rights. If we are able to do our act right in digital, you will see digital overtaking television in terms of viewership and in terms of revenue. I think the digital rights will go three-four times of television in the next five years. That is if we get our act right. Money should be spent on technology on the digital platforms. The feel has to change. New technologies will bring user experience to a better level. Right now we are not doing it. BCCI needs to put in the money," he added.
According to Lalit Modi, IPL is recession proof and that is something he had predicted long ago.
"The viewership is now probably highest in the world in terms of number of people watching and the eye balls getting attracted to the game. I have always maintained, and everybody laughed at me, that IPL is recession proof. It really is coming out to be true that is recession proof as far as India is concerned. We have got newer and newer fan bases that are joining in. But we have to be careful going forward. Because the younger age group is mostly on digital, that is why the digital rights have gone up tremendously in price but their experience has not been so good in India today as far as watching it on a particular platform," he stated.
"The Jio platform that has it, is not very user-friendly at the current moment. When you turn the phone around from horizontal to vertical, it doesn't capture that...that loses the faith in the fans."
Modi, who was a key figure in running the league from 2008 to 2010, also stressed on the need to improve infrastructure in the Indian cricket stadiums.
"The IPL has contributed Rs 100,000 crore to the BCCI in total. Rs 58,000 crore last eight years alone. Fifty per cent of the money remains with the BCCI, fifty per cent is shared with the IPL franchises. What has BCCI done to upgrade the infrastructure? You look at Kotla. They should demolish Kotla. They should most of the stadiums and build fresh. You can put world class infrastructure in, air-condition, good toilet, good hygienic eating places, good viewer experience, car parks. You need to put that money in in order to build world-class stadium," he said.
(With NDTV inputs)