The recent bidding war for the IPL 2023-27 media rights was recently a top headline in the sports world. Reliance Industries Limited, whose owner is Indian businessman Mukesh Ambani, Asia’s richest person, recently won the digital rights battle for the next five IPL seasons for a hefty amount. This deal is expected to help Mukesh Ambani and Reliance Industries Limited in many ways.
Recently, Reliance Industries Limited-co-owned Viacom18 put a bid for around INR 23,800 crore to win the complete digital media rights for the next five IPL seasons (Package B+ Package C). While Package B covers digital rights for the Indian sub-continent, Package C covers special 18 selected games in each season for digital space in India, including opening, final, three play-offs, and a few double weekenders.
In addition, Viacom18 also won the partial bid for Package D, which will help them to take the tv and digital rights for the next five IPL seasons in SENA countries (South Africa, England/UK, New Zealand and Australia). Viacom18 and Times Internet (for MENA countries and USA) jointly won that bid for just less than INR 1,100 crore.
How can Mukesh Ambani, Reliance Industries Limited, and Viacom18 achieve success through IPL digital media rights?
According to research firms Bank of America (BofA) and CLSA, the recent IPL digital rights bid success will massively help Mukesh Ambani-owned Reliance Industries Limited to grow up in the digital sector business. Apart from the OTT platform growth, Reliance’s telecom business is also expected to see massive growth due to the IPL media rights.
Viacom18’s Indian subscription video-on-demand and over-the-top streaming service, Voot currently has only around 2% of the market share in the Indian OTT ecosystem. While the Times Internet’s Indian OTT platform MX Player reportedly has the largest market share in the Indian OTT ecosystem (almost 34%), the previous IPL digital media right holder Disney+Hotstar is in the second position in this large market with 26%.
IPL helps to bring huge Indian viewers to the OTT platforms, which is significantly rising as time progresses. After acquiring the IPL media rights, Voot has now entered a powerful position to capture the Indian OTT ecosystem. As the IPL will now run for around two-and-a-half months each year, Voot will have a great chance to move up in the Indian OTT race.
In the current model in the Indian OTT ecosystem, there are two major ways to generate revenues. While one crucial model is through the ads, the other model is the subscription. The market expects a significant rise in ads during the next IPL season. In the meantime, the low subscription model will easily attract fans to experience the next IPL seasons without much interruption.
Chance of rising for Jio platforms
However, experts believe that the Jio platforms will also get significant benefits during the next IPL tournaments. Some of the crucial names in Jio platforms are JioTV (TV streaming app), JioCinema (video-on-demand), JioFiber (broadband service) along with other apps and digital businesses.
While Jio is the largest telecom operator in India (wireless operator), there is a high possibility that the upcoming IPL seasons will also help several Jio platforms to achieve big successes.