BCCI announce plans for maximising revenues

Published: Tuesday, December 20, 2005, 23:53 [IST]
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New Delhi:In a major effort to maximise its revenues, Cricket Board today announced a series of initiatives including retaining of intellectual property rights and creating its own TV network identity.

"All news channels will from now on have a direct contract with us. Let us make it clear that the rights are owned by the BCCI and the channels are only licensees," BCCI Vice-President Lalit Modi said at a press conference.

Accordingly, channels from now on will have to carry the BCCI logo, which is to be designed and registered shortly.

Besides the sale of radio and broadband rights, BCCI is also looking to cash in on the telecom boom by announcing separate rights for mobile telephony.

"The revenue potential from MMS, SMS, Video Imagery and Gaming from these appliances will grow exponentially in the years to come," Modi said.

With regard to radio rights, BCCI plans to seek bids for radio broadcasts territory wise across the globe, and to sell FM rights separately for each city taking into account language requirements.

The rights for voice over IP and radiotelephony would be retained by BCCI.

The Board also plans to set up its own portal which, besides providing day to day updates and information about it, would also beam live matches, archival footage, interviews, memorabilia and merchandise etc.

A Sub-Committee of the Marketing Committee has been formed to take forward and implement the decisions.

The Sub-Committee will be chaired by Modi and will have I S Bindra, A C Muthiah, Ranbir Singh Mahendra, K V Rao and Shashank Manohar as office bearers. Modi said Doordarshan cannot insert ads on its own in cases where it did not bid and win the rights for telecast.

"If they bid and win, it is fine. But if they do not bid, they must carry the feed as given by the BCCI ... So far our rights have been infringed upon," he said.

Modi, the chief of Rajasthan Cricket Association, also said Prasar Bharti was wrong to say that BCCI was law-bound to give it the FM rights.

"There is a debate as to whether cricket falls under the category of news and current affairs. We in the Board would like say that it is sport and entertainment," he said.

With regard to private news channels seeking to use its match footages, Modi said the BCCI was studying the Olympic guidelines and also in discussion with the broadcasters to set up a framework.

Modi said from now on players would get a share of "collective 26 percent of the grand total revenue of Board's all streams of revenue."

Asked if such grandiose plans might go in vain since the regime could change next year, Modi said, all contracts it had signed so far were "legally binding." "Moreover, it is difficult for anybody to go back on transparency.

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