LAHORE: Broadcasting and live-streaming rights of the Pakistan Super League (PSL) for the next three years were sold to Blitz Advertising and Techfront for $36 million, the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) confirmed on Friday.

The deal was worth 358 per cent more than the previous one but less than $40 million — the price PCB aimed to sell the rights for initially.

“We have successfully exceeded our targets for the new HBL PSL broadcast and live-streaming rights,” PCB chairman Ehsan Mani was quoted as saying in the press release.

“Rights sold to Blitz Advertising and Techfront from 2019 to 2021 at an unprecedented 358 per cent more than the previous three years of one of the most attractive cricket leagues on the planet,” a PCB press release issued here on Friday said. “The final figures of the agreement will remain confidential.”

It may be mentioned here that the PCB was expecting an offer of $40 million or more this time for the PSL broadcasting rights but it did not happen. The board held several rounds of negotiation with the successful group before finally reaching a deal of $36 million.

“With the broadcast and live-streaming rights now finalized, further details on local and foreign TV channels, which will air live action of the PSL 2019 from Feb 14, will be finalised and then released in due course,” the press release further said.

“We have successfully exceeded our targets for the new PSL broadcast and live-streaming rights,” Mani said.

“I would like to congratulate and thank Blitz Advertising and Techfront for partnering with us once again. This is a time-tested partnership and our joint objective, for the next three years, is to ensure that PSL continues to grow in terms of fan engagement.

“The bid process for the new rights cycle saw tremendous interest from multiple parties with added focus on the live-streaming rights of PSL in a growing digital market.

“I would like to thank all the companies who expressed their interest in partnering with us for the next three years. We value and appreciate their interest and support,” concluded Mani.

PSL returns to action with a glittering opening ceremony in Dubai followed by the opening game between Islamabad United and Lahore Qalandars on Feb 14, 2019. For the first time in the short history of this tournament, eight matches at the backend of the tournament will be staged in Pakistan with Lahore staging three and Karachi hosting five including the final on March 17.

Published in Dawn, December 22nd, 2018