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Oppo buys title sponsorship rights from BCCI, replacing Star India

Update: The BCCI has confirmed that Oppo will be the new title sponsor for team India.

Chinese smartphone maker Oppo has bagged the title sponsorship contract for the Indian cricket team, replacing existing sponsor Star India, according to this PTI report. The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) said that the sponsorship deal will be valid from April 2017 up to a period of 5 years. The report does not mention the financials behind the deal, however, when Paytm bagged a title sponsorship deal with BCCI in 2015, it paid a total of Rs 203.28 crore for 84 different matches.

Title sponsorship rights include, “sponsor branding of the relevant series with the title sponsor logo, official designation as the ‘Title Sponsor’ of the relevant international or domestic Series, visibility at the stadium during both international and domestic matches, broadcast sponsorship rights, and a host of other rights.” Oppo will now be able to advertise itself on player t-shirts, on the boundary rope, cricket grounds and hoardings near the boundary etc.

The report added that Star India had no intention to renew its earlier title sponsorship deal that it had signed in 2013. The broadcasting company apparently had differences with BCCI regarding certain obligations in the contract. Star India took over the rights from Sahara in 2013 and paid Rs 1.42 crore lesser than Sahara for each match, according to DailyMail. Apart from this title sponsorship, Star India holds broadcast, Internet and mobile streaming rights of BCCI events including IPL.

Start India v/s BCCI on proprietary content

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Last year, BCCI-IPL’s representative had warned app developers against broadcasting, streaming or displaying what it refers to as, “proprietary content” within apps. Proprietary content includes match related content such as scorecards, schedules, commentary and audio-visual footage. Following this, Star India seems to have stepped down from sponsoring BCCI events.

Live content isn’t covered by copyright and is legally referred to as Hot News, and there were instances of companies trying to claim exclusive rights over such content. Star India was trying to restrict the usage of proprietary content up until 15 minutes after the occurrence of the event. However, the Supreme Court ruled in May last year that a company holding broadcasting rights must share content including video feeds and scores with other broadcasters on a non-discriminatory basis. More on this here.


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