The media rights tender of the Indian Premier League (IPL) for the 2023-2027 cycle, which should have been released by now, will reportedly take more time.
Earlier, the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) had announced that it would release it immediately after the finalisation of the two new IPL teams in late October however, it now seems that it would only come in December.
“The IPL Media Rights tender for the cycle 2023-2027 will be released immediately after the appointment of two new IPL teams which is scheduled to be announced on 25th October 2021,” the BCCI had said in a statement after a governing council meeting of the IPL on September 28.
However, it has been around a month since the Indian board finalised the two new teams of the cash-rich league but the media rights tender is yet to be released.
As per reports, one of the main reason behind the delay could be the uncertainty surrounding the Ahmedabad franchise whose owners — CVC Sports — is yet to receive the Letter of Intent from the the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI).
Although CVC Capital Partners had bagged the ownerhsip rights of Ahmedabad franchise for Rs 5625 crores on October 25, however, with the company acquiring a 100 percent equity stake in Italian gaming and payments operator, Sisal Group S.p.A. (“Sisal”), the matter became controversial.
Although betting, which is legal overseas, has not been legalised in India and as a result, CVC’s acquisition of the Ahmedabad franchise raised many questions following which there has been a delay from the Indian board in handing the Letter of Intent to CVC. Significantly, the Letter of Intent has already been submitted to the RPSG Group of Sanjiv Goenka, who had bagged the Lucknow franchise for a whopping Rs 7090 crores.
As per reports, the CVC is now trying to convince the BCCI that its investment in betting firm, which has become a bone of contention, is not illegal. Moreover, few top CVC officials have flown to India to have talks with the BCCI office-bearers.
Meanwhile, the BCCI’s legal team is also monitoring and looking into the CVC files. It is likley that the team might form a committee to adjudicate on the issue.
After CVC had acquired one of the two franchise, former IPL chairman Lalit Modi ruffled a few feathers by drawing attention to the companies association with the Milan-based betting company Sisal.
“I guess betting companies can buy an IPL team. must be a new rule. apparently, one qualified bidder also owns a big betting company. what next? does BCCI not do their homework? what can Anti-corruption do in such a case? #cricket,” Modi had tweetd.
Another reason could be the upcoming Annual General Meeting (AGM) of the BCCI on December 4 when the new Governing Council of the IPL will be formed which will witness the addition of three new members.
The next edition of IPL is likley to be staged in the March-April window and a mega auction for it will most probably be held in December this year or January, 2022.
As of now, several reports claim that the media rights tender for the new cycle would be released only in December after the above mentioned hurdles get cleared by the BCCI.