The reshaping of the cricket broadcast landscape in India has continued with Sony Pictures Networks India (SPN) acquiring the rights for Australian cricket for the Indian subcontinent (Pakistan and Sri Lanka included) for the next six years, beginning with the 2017-18 Ashes.
The deal with Cricket Australia - for an undisclosed amount - also contains the men's and women's Big Bash League, and includes tours by India, Pakistan and South Africa, as well as the 2021-22 Ashes.
Through its acquisition of Ten Sports last year, SPN, which lost a close bid for the IPL rights to Star India, now holds the Indian broadcast rights for international cricket played in Australia, South Africa, the UAE, Sri Lanka, Zimbabwe and the West Indies. Star India was the previous holder of CA's broadcast rights for the Indian market.
"Cricket enjoys a high viewership in India and with the acquisition of the media rights of Cricket Australia, we are ensuring that the viewer has continuous cricketing action, all through the year," NP Singh, the SPN chief executive, said.
James Sutherland, the CEO of Cricket Australia, said: "We are delighted to conclude this agreement with Sony. They understand the global value of Australian cricket. We're also delighted with their support of our national women's team, and the men's and women's Big Bash. One of Australian cricket's key strategies is to ensure it has a sustainable approach to investment, so that we can keep growing the game, and the six-year deal with SPN is part of that strategy."
ESPN has a long-term collaboration with Sony Pictures Networks (SPN) for the launch of SONYESPN-branded television channels and digital assets in India and the subcontinent.