Tiff over IPL telecast


STAR has wanted to build up an image on the sports front. So with the IPL coming up, it only made sense to become the associate sponsor for it. PepsiCo remains the title sponsor. Vodafone, YES Bank and STAR India have now become the associate sponsors for this cricket event.

 STAR’s rival network Multi Screen Media (MSM), does not seem too happy with this decision. Besides SET Max and Sony SIX, MSM also operates Sony Entertainment Channel, which is in direct competition with STAR Plus. In the General Entertainment Channel (GEC), Star Plus is the leading channel.

Being an associate sponsor, the STAR brand would be an important feature during the matches, along with a strong on-ground presence. STAR has apparently paid an amount of Rs. 30 Crore for this sponsorship.

Since the matches are telecast on SET Max and Sony SIX, MSM need not worry much. STAR has joined this associate sponsorship via STAR Plus, and this is neither a rival of SET Max or Sony SIX. However, a senior executive at a media agency was quoted saying, “It is known that STAR India is aggressively building up its sports business. It has all the cricket rights in India; only IPL was missing.

By being a sponsor, it has not only joined as associate but also gate crashed the official broadcaster's party.”

IPL is nothing less than a brand, and both, STAR and MSM would greatly benefit out of this deal. Since the platform is so huge, they would not have to eat out from each other’s plate; both would gain equal mileage and reach out to maximum people possible.

 Last year, STAR India’s channel, Life OK, was the official sponsor of Chennai Super Kings. IPL Chairman Rajeev Shukla remained unavailable on this issue. It is believed that the contract which was signed in 2009, said that MSM’s payout for IPL 2 to IPL 10 would be a consolidated Rs. 8200 Crore. MSM also had to give back Rs. 425 Crore to BCCI, which it was supposed to give as facilitation fee to a Mauritius-based World Sport Group. The current broadcast deal was signed in July 2010 by MSM Satellite (Singapore) Pvt Ltd, and it is fully owned by MSM.

 This is the sixth edition of IPL. The opening ceremony will be held on 2nd April 2013 and the series would start from 3rd April and go on till the 26th of May.