Cricket TV Rights 24/25+

I think getting a better appreciation of whether Ten is capable of broadcasting the cricket and whether Paramount is going to be around for the term of the rights deal are matters more concerning than what they might be posting for ratings, and neither of those are insurmountable and would be part of any decent due-diligence that CA would do.

Their ratings weren’t flash when they had the BBL either - if Ten/P+ was the only place for people to watch the cricket, it will get the eyeballs but there is no guarantee whatever slop they serve up “after the cricket” (as Seven like to promote) will.

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Here’s what I would hope happens:

Cricket Australia signs a $3.5 billion, 10 year broadcast deal which is the richest broadcast deal for cricket in Australia with Channel 10 and Paramount+ to televise Tests, BBL, ODIs and T20s.

The deal is worth $350m a year and is far more than the current $1.2 billion deal with Seven and Foxtel. The deal is also far more better for fans, having to pay $10 dollars for premium content on Paramount+, and more matches on FTA.

The Tests are all broadcast for free on Channel 10 and 10 Bold, with all matches simulcast ad-free on Paramount+. All Australian ODIs and all BBL matches are also on Channel 10/10 Bold/Paramount+.

T20s and international cricket are exclusively on Paramount+. WBBL games will be on 10 Bold with the A-League moved to 10 Peach if necessary.

The reality program on 10 during January is moved to the start of February to match up with the other commercials, and also to put it in the ratings season and to not interfere with BBL.

An upgrade would be done to Paramount+, with a rewind from the beginning feature to be added and all bugs currently fixed. Also to keep pub viewers watching the cricket, a new channel “Paramount Pub” would be launched where viewers have access to Cricket, A-League and Socceroos matches.

BENEFITS

  • Cricket Australia get a better deal worth more money
  • More matches on FTA
  • Cheaper for games on Paramount+ instead of Foxtel/Kayo
  • Could boost Ten’s reality shows with lots of advertising
  • A-League could get a boost if “Paramount Pub” shows A-League
  • Ten could beat Seven in summer ratings
  • More subscribers for Paramount+, which could stay there for other programs
  • Cricket Australia with a company who doesn’t sue if things don’t go there way
  • Deal could extend to having “Paramount+” on the grass in stadium and ads on the billboards
  • Ten could make less reality shows, seeing as two months of programming will not have to be filled

NEGATIVES

  • No high rating reality shows during summer
  • A-League could be moved around
  • Hard to get filler on nights with no cricket
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No chance they get 350 million a year, cricket isn’t that valuable to advertisers or capable of pulling in so much subscription revenue. CA should be chuffed if they get something close to 180-200 million a year, especially given the high profile travails for the BBL.

But that is equal to, if not less than the current deal. Look at the AFL, Tennis and NRL. The next deals will almost double in money per year so it could be realistic of CA to expect the same.

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Other than Test cricket, cumulative audiences for the other formats have arguably shrunk over the course of the last deal. Bilateral white ball cricket is on its death throes, while the BBL has lost whatever goodwill it had built up till 2017-18 to the point where it’s a loss leader for broadcasters and struggling to retain any sort of relevance for audiences. The last deal was horrendously overvalued, which was primarily the fault of Channel 7 and Fox, but CA sabotaged the primacy of the sport by ignoring the long-term detrimental impact of that deal. In my view, if the new deal is valued at around the same multiple as the last one, CA would have done well.

There will be a point where someone will sign a deal for the same (or possibly less) than their previous deal - this could be that deal. The size of the AFL/NRL/Tennis deals is no barometer to what other sports will get - the first two are significant pillars of their broadcaster’s schedules and the last is playing catchup IMO after years of substandard growth while with Seven.

Short-form cricket is a real drag on the ticket - internationally it’s not great and very cyclical around certain countries and timing for events (like the world cup) and domestically frankly is a mess - the BBL is too long and starts too late, not to mention it lacks real attractive power (the best players are either playing in the national team or chasing money at the multitude of overlapping tournaments that have been able to take advantage of the weakness of the BBL)

The tests at least to start the next rights round are weak too - it’s highly likely that they’ll improve at the back end of the rights but that’s a major assumption that could be costly if it doesn’t eventuate. In the meantime, the successful rights holder will have to navigate what could be a rough ride that may have significant impacts to making the rights work financially.

Ten need to be careful not to bid too much in an act of desperation to get something on the books

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Premium sport on 10 with the A-League being promoted on 10 during the cricket will get some eyeballs for the round ball code.

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Agree in principle with the argument, but the Test schedule for the start of the next cycle (2024-25) isn’t that bad:

2024-25 - 5 Tests vs India
2025-26 - 5 Tests vs England
2026-27 - 3 Tests vs New Zealand and 2 Tests vs Bangladesh (ok this will be problematic)

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Apart from T20’s what are the other ‘international cricket’ that’s exclusive to Paramount+ if ODI’s are also on 10/10 Bold/Paramount+?

Also what about WBBL & Women’s Tests,ODI’s & T20’s?

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If 10 gets Cricket it’ll be a reverse situation from 2002-2006 when 7 did not have any premium sporting event in winter after losing the AFL rights to Nine/Ten/Fox

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  • WBBL on 10 Bold
  • Women’s Tests on 10/10 Bold
  • WODI on 10 Bold
  • WT20 on Paramount+

All mens events that are on FTA would also have the women’s equivalent on FTA.

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yeah that works. i would swap WODI’s with WT20 as it’s shorter and easier to show on FTA

iirc women’s internationals have always been FTA or free live stream by CA, so would be interesting IF 10/Paramount gets the rights if they have it under Paramount or maybe a combo of free live stream on 10 play/CA & paramount to keep it free to watch, like some WBBL games last 2 seasons

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I would say this is why Paramount wants Cricket rather than Olympics or Tennis:

The cricket season runs months long (from November to February, making games exclusive to Paramount+ will make fans renew their subscriptions, and they will also most likely try out the programs on Paramount+, which will make them renew their subscription even after the cricket season is done if they like the shows on the platform, which equals more money for Paramount.

Lets compare it to the Olympics and Tennis. The big seasons are basically only 2 weeks long, and fans will get a free trial or sign up for one month and then cancel after without trying the new shows and staying. Yes they might do that but its more likely they will with Cricket as it is the most popular summer sport and is longer than Olympics/Tennis season.

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Unless they mean a 20% commercial-network share - and last week, on a network-wide status, they only had 20.4% of the 7/9/10 audience.

But if that’s what they mean, why bring in the ABC in to muddy the argument. And it’s not like Ten being in the low-20s for that is anything new.

I get that it’s intended as a “don’t give it to them, give it to us” thing (if you’re quoting the Code article, there is a lot of “well, they would say that” just from that) but I suspect the same things were being said when the BBL went to Ten the first time around.

CA are a little stuck re: quality - you’re having extra leagues being funded by IPL teams (5 of 6 teams in the UAE league [and the other owned by a majority stakeholder in Man Utd, as something different], the SA 20, half of the teams in the Caribbean PL). Yet like the ECB and their teams for The Hundred, I can’t imagine there’d be public or CA appetite for a situation where the states or counties lose control of those teams - they are “Big Three” nations who don’t want to be seen as subordinate to the BCCI and the IPL, and don’t want to their teams to be another, say, Knight Riders or Super Kings satellite team. (NZ Cricket may be in the same boat but less so.)

Those outside the big 3 - aside those that don’t see eye-to-eye with India (Pakistan the obvious place) - likely don’t care, they just want the money injection that comes from yet another 20- or 10-over league, as they’re often desperate to get their international teams competitive.

I guess this means the BBL ends up being a second-choice place to go money-wise. Being in parallel with the SA 20 won’t mean much as I suspect the amounts being paid in rand there won’t quite match here, but other leagues, much more so.

Frustrating for locals and for CA if they want an uplift in their contract, but I can’t say they’d want to if it meant selling their soul to the BCCI. Then again, the rights deals overseas can make up for that somewhat.

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It will probably be USD given the teams are all IPL satellites, plus similar or more money for less cricket.

They’ve also contributed to why players are increasingly not interested in playing in Australia - the salary cap and limits on international players have and will increasingly mean that a significant number of players will seek out alternate tournaments. The timing of the tournament doesn’t help either

The original intention for the BBL was for the franchises to be at greater arms-length from the state governing bodies, but the states won out.

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To the detriment of the franchises. Look at the Melbourne teams: both in the BBL Final in their last independent season, now are both shambles.

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I assume there will be an announcement before the end of the year as to who has gotten the rights?

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Oh gawd I hope so

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IIRC I think CA wanted a deal before Christmas. I think Nine is out of the question and I think the main battle will be Paramount and Ten v. Seven and Foxtel.

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