Cricket Business : No series against India, Star Sports loses interest in NewZealand Cricket

It is getting from bad to worse for the global cricket boards to get a broadcaster in India. NewZealand Cricket (NZC) which had a contract since 2017 with Star Sports is now left without a broadcast partner in India. Post the India tour of New Zealand in the month of Jan-Feb 2020, NZC’s contract with Star Sports lapsed and the later is not ready to renew the deal. Reason, for the next two seasons Indian cricket team will not tour New Zealand. 
 
As per the future tour program, India will now next tour New Zealand only in March 2022, that also only for3 ODI’S. InsideSport has gathered from its sources, this is the reason Star Sports declined to entertain fresh contract with NZC. The earlier deal with Star Sports was signed in 2017 in a range of $30Mn with a guaranteed 18 India games (2T, 8ODI, 8T20). 
 
Now with the India games being reduced to only 3 matches – according to the sources it failed to create any impression on the incumbent broadcaster. 
 
 
FTP for New Zealand Cricket 
 
NEWZEALAND Test ODI T20

Year 2020
Bangladesh (Sep) 3
West-Indies (Oct-Nov) 3 3
Pakistan (Dec-Jan) 2 3
Year 2021
Sri Lanka (Feb) 3 3
Bangladesh (March) 3 3
Australia (March) 3
Bangladesh (Dec-Jan) 2 3
Year 2022
Netherlands (Jan-Feb) 3
South Africa (Feb-Mar) 2 3
India (March) 3
SriLanka (Nov-Dec) 2 3
West-Indies (Dec) 3
Year 2023
 
NZC has host broadcast deal in place with Spark Sports
 
The good news for NZC is, though they now don’t have any India broadcaster but they have long term deal secured with OTT player Spark Sports for the territory of New Zealand. Also another comforting factor for NZC would be that they still have some time for the first series of this cycle. Bangladesh is scheduled to tour New Zealand for their first home series this cycle in the month of September for 3 T20 Games.
 
Will NZC get any other broadcast partner in India ?
 
“The broadcasters are reeling under the pain inflicted by Covid19 and in such a scenario it will be difficult for NZC to sign a deal with the Indian broadcaster. Even if that happens it will be at a considerably reduced payouts”, said one of the media rights expert in the territory. 
 
In the middle of Covid19 pandemic, cricket economy has completely gone for toss. As the big cricket boards like BCCI, Cricket Australia, England Cricket Board are trying their best to minimize the damage, most of the others are struggling to get their act together. 
 
Most of the Cricket Boards are currently struggling for deal in the Indian Sub-Continent
 
Cricket West Indies(CWI), Sri Lanka Cricket (SLC), Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) and Bangladesh Cricket Board (BCB) all have their broadcast deals pending in the territory currently and in the current scenario it will be difficult for them to get a broadcast partner anywhere closer to the previous values. 
 
 
Cricket West Indies the most precariously placed
 
The most precariously placed of all the boards is the Cricket West Indies which according to their own admission is in ‘financial ICU’. 
 
As reported earlier by InsideSport.co, the CWI management in on road since last 7 months now to finalize a global broadcast deal but have failed in their pursuit. The last deal with Ten Sports (Now part of Sony Pictures Network) got over at the starting of the year. The seven year deal with Ten Sports was worth USD 97 million. 
 
– CWI is already without a broadcast partner for now 6 months. This translates into loss of revenue for two quarters
– The domestic market for CWI is negligible. 
– Negotiations with Sony Pictures Network has not moved forward. The offer from SPN is far below CWI’S expectations. 
– In the current market, CWI will have to take minimum 30% hit on their rights portfolio. 
 
 Sri Lanka Cricket struggling – Tender postponed 7 times
 
Like CWI, SLC is also struggling to get a broadcast partner since the month of February. 7 times tender timelines have been changed, less due to Covid19 but more because of limited interest from the bidders. SLC has another peculiar problem – most of their lucrative home series including India tour has been postponed in these times. With depleted calendar it will be impossible for the bidders (No Star, No Discovery) to pay what SLC is expecting. 
 
– SLC first of all already has lost 4 series from FTP
– SPN is the only serious taker
– The values for SLC media rights will see minimum 20-25% erosion
 
Pakistan Cricket Board – Will they get India broadcast partner ?
 
Since the time PCB has started monetizing media rights, it has been the Indian broadcasters who have picked their rights. But in the current political circumstances it will be difficult for PCB to attract any Indian broadcaster. 
 
PCB’S current media rights deal with Ten Sports (Now SPN) has already lapsed. So currently the Pakistan Board is without a broadcast partner. PCB’S next home series is scheduled for October and they are yet to even initiate the media rights sales process for the next cycle. In these difficult times it will be hard for PCB to find a decent buyer, especially as the biggest buyer of cricket rights in the region i.e Star India in all likelihood will stay away from the tender. 
 
Bangladesh Cricket Board – Yet to launch tender process
 
Like PCB, BCB also is currently without the broadcast partner. BCB’S 5 year deal with the local broadcaster GAZI TV ended in March but the board is yet to even finalize the way forward on the tender for the next cycle. 
 
Like PCB, BCB also may not find any interest from the Indian broadcaster in the current circumstances. But unlike most of the other struggling boards BCB is far better placed on the back strength of their local market. For BCB, the dependency on the big Indian broadcasters like Star Sports / Sony is far less as proved during the last tender cycle. In the last cycle BCB rights were picked by local players for USD 20.1 Million. The local partners will not give BCB any big raise but in GAZI, Channel9 and some other local players the Bangladesh media market has enough strength to at least keep the board afloat.