Bangladesh news

Bangladesh still without media rights owners

Mohammad Isam

September 14, 2012

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Ziaur Rahman celebrates Justin Ontong's wicket, Bangladesh v South Africa, T20 tri-series, Harare, June 22, 2012
Bangladesh have turned down offers for their media rights either due to paperwork issues or the amount of money being offered © AFP
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The worldwide media rights of the Bangladesh Cricket Board (BCB) remain at its tables after a third deadline went by on Friday without an offer being deemed good enough, either due to paperwork issues or the amount of money being offered. Sporty Solutionz's bid of $15 million was considered "non-responsive" after they failed to provide a bank guarantee. The board will now ask Virgo Media Limited, who made an offer of $6 million and is the only other bidder, to match Sporty Solutionz.

"We have declared Sporty Solutionz's bid as non-responsive after they couldn't provide a bank guarantee," BCB media committee chairman Jalal Yunus said at the end of the board's emergency meeting. "The only other bidder was Virgo Media who offered $6 million. The board has decided to send them a letter [asking them] to match $15 million. Otherwise we will discuss, with our lawyers, the possibility of a re-tender."

What was expected by many in the BCB, including president AHM Mustafa Kamal, to be completed by at least Friday could now take months. The BCB floated the tender for a TV deal from November 1, 2012, to April 30, 2016, after a committee headed by vice-president Ahmed Sajjadul Alam prepared a guideline for the new TV deal. A last date for buying bid papers was set for August 31, but since only two companies showed interest, the deadline was first extended to September 12 and then September 14, and amendments were made to the initial clauses in the tender. But it still drew only two consortiums - Sporty Solutionz and Virgo Media Limited.

The prerequisites for prospective bidders were modified for the broadcasting and media rights; after it was understood by the BCB that companies with less experience wanted to apply, the new requirement stipulated a tender to be acceptable only if either the marketing agent or the broadcaster had five years' experience in the related field. Earlier all three components of the media rights - production, broadcasting and marketing - were required to have five years of experience in cricket coverage.

BCB president AHM Mustafa Kamal had said on September 4 that a bank guarantee would also be paramount to the deal. "There will be an insurance cover put in place as well. At the time of the offer, they have to pay $2.5 million as security money in the form of bank guarantee, bank draft, etc," he had said. "We will take this for a few days. A week after we give them a letter of intent, they have to pay the first year's payment in cash."

Mohammad Isam is ESPNcricinfo's correspondent in Bangladesh

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