Here’s the gaming app that made a ₹625 crore bet on IPL


Fantasy gaming app My11Circle on Wednesday won the race to be an official partner of the Indian Premier League (IPL), bidding 125 crore per year for a period of five years. The app from Games24x7 trumped incumbent Dream11, which bid 103 crore per year for the partner rights for the cricket tournament. Over five years, My11Circle will pay a total of 625 crore for the rights, two officials in the BCCI confirmed.

While the bids were opened on Wednesday, the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) is expected to make a formal announcement later, one of the officials said on condition of anonymity.

In the last round, Dream11 had paid 210 crore for official partner rights for four years, which ended in 2013.

BCCI will give official partner or OP status to six entities from different categories, loosely organized around industries that bid for the rights. All OPs get category exclusivity, which means no other player from fantasy category can be an official partner for the next five years.

In the financial services slot, Angel Broking, which bid for a five-year partnership, outbid rival Groww by placing a bid of 82 crore per year, compared to the latter’s bid of 75 crore per year.

The third official partner rights, for the financial services-cards category, was won by Rupay, which bid 70 crore per year for three years and won uncontested as no other company put in a bid.

Mastercard had picked up the tender document, but did not place any bid, the second official cited above confirmed, also requesting not to be named.

Meanwhile, tyre maker Ceat will continue to be the ‘strategic time out’ partner for the next five years, with its winning bid of 48 crore per year. Here, too, there was no other bid.

“Today, three out of six official partners (OPs) were decided by way of transparent bidding. Now that we have discovered the price, the board will close the other three, too, via mutual negotiations,” one of the officials said. “Apart from three OPs, the orange and purple cap as well as umpire partner rights weren’t sold as of now.”

Last month, the Tata Group won the IPL title sponsorship rights for an astronomical 500 crore per year for five years.

For perspective, these are in addition to television and digital rights for the IPL that BCCI had sold earlier for five years (2023-2027) for 23,575 crore and 23,757.5 crore, respectively, to Disney Star and Viacom18.

The BCCI had invited bids for the latest round on 29 January from entities for acquiring the official partner rights for the IPL.

Interested parties were given time till 19 February to pick up the document and Wednesday was the deadline to submit the bids.

In all, 11 companies picked up the documents, including Saudi Aramco, Saudi Tourism Authority, DP World, MRF and PhonePe, but they did not place any bid.