Indian television production company Nimbus has been awarded the marketing rights for Indian cricket for the next four years.

Nimbus has paid a mammoth $612 million for media rights (cable, DTH and broadband, India FM radio rights and global satellite rights. The deal will see Nimbus market all Indian cricket played worldwide. It has not yet been confirmed who will broadcast the matches although whichever channel does will share coverage with terrestrial service Doordarshan. Nimbus does not have a channel of its own.

ESPN STAR came second in the bidding war with a bid of $550 million. ZEE Telefilms was third with a bid of $530 million. BSkyB and Sony Entertainment Television Asia ($478 million) were both disqualified attaching conditions to their bids. BCCI had made it clear the bids should come unconditional.

Nimbus will make the decision on which broadcaster will show the upcoming India cricket matches. It looks likely broadcaters will be selected individually per series.

The new contract between the BCCI and Nimbus begins on 1st March 2006 and ends March 2010.

It was also announced last week that Nimbus won the television production contract from the BCCI.