Bangladesh news May 16, 2014

BCB sells worldwide media rights for $20.02 million

The BCB has sold its worldwide media rights for the next six years, until April 2020, to Gazi TV for the price of $20.02 million. The company won the rights after quoting an offer price slightly higher than the $20 million floor price set by the board.

Gazi TV became the only contender during the open bid on Friday, after another company, Mediacom, quoted a lower price. BCB president Nazmul Hassan said the board was satisfied with the outcome, as it could have been worse.

"There was an open bid this morning after which the board had to take a decision in a meeting," Hassan said. "There were two participants, one of whom didn't meet our floor price so they became automatically ineligible. Gazi TV has paid just more than our floor price, and their papers have been okayed. As they have no financial problems, we are giving them this work. BCB will receive from them $20.02 million (net) without production cost.

"I don't look at history, but we are satisfied. We believe that we received [the bid] according to the current market situation. If nobody had taken part in the bid, it would have put us in an embarrassing position."

There were several questions during the press briefing about the Gazi TV's links with the BCB. Gazi Golam Murtoza, the vice-chairman of Gazi TV, is a BCB director and chairman of the tournament committee. Gazi TV's chairman, Gazi Golam Dastagir, is also a former BCB director.

However, Kazi Inam Ahmed, the BCB's marketing committee chairman who handled the media rights, said Murtoza had stayed out of any discussion on the media rights.

"We want to be clear that, during the entire process our committee worked on, the BCB director who is related to the Gazi family has signed legal papers that said he will not be present during any board meeting where we will discuss the TV rights deal," Ahmed said. "We have ensured that our process remained transparent, and since everything took place through open bidding, there was no chance of corruption."

The BCB's last long-term deal was with Nimbus between 2006 and 2012 after which Channel 9, Gazi TV and Masranga TV have been given rights separately for home series since October 2012.

Mohammad Isam is ESPNcricinfo's Bangladesh correspondent. @isam84

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