Sony Pictures Networks, which launched the biggest cricket franchise in India, the Indian Premier League (IPL) in 2008, is said to be fighting hard to retain the rights of the tournament.
The ten-year rights, which come to an end next year, will be up for tender again later this year for a five-year period. However, Sony Pictures Networks is prepared for the onslaught.
CEO of Sony Pictures Network, NP Singh told BestMediaInfo, “Sony�۪s association in IPL started off in late 2007-early 2008 when BCCI (Cricket Control Board) came to us with the idea. At the time, when there were not many believers in the concept, we believed in it and we invested in it and have nurtured it and played an active role in helping IPL get the iconic status that it has today. We at Sony are committed to IPL and we will make an aggressive bid to retain our rights for the tournament. I feel very confident that we will retain the event for another long time.”
Asked if ESPN’s partnership with Sony would help it retain the rights, Singh said, “I wouldn�۪t want to comment on it, in that sense. But Sony as a broadcaster and as a company has very strong credentials. Therefore, it doesn�۪t really need support to make an aggressive support.”