Sun TV Network wins bid for Hyderabad IPL franchise

Sun TV bid Rs 85.05 crore per year to win the bid for the franchise.

The Kalanidihi Maran-owned Sun TV Network has won the bid to replace the terminated Deccan Chargers in the Indian Premier League from next season onwards. Sun TV bid Rs 85.05 crore per year to win the bid for the franchise, which will be based in Hyderabad.

The decision was announced after a meeting of the IPL's Governing Council in Mumbai.

The franchise has reportedly been acquired for the next five seasons, which makes the total winning bid Rs. 425 crore.

Sun TV's successful bid was substantially higher than PVP Ventures' second bid of Rs 69.03 crore. In mid-September, the Chargers had rejected a Rs.900-crore bid from PVP, a Hyderabad-based film production house, for ownership rights.

The Sun TV network runs 32 channels, mainly in south Indian languages, which reach 95 million households, according to its website. The network is also viewed in 27 other countries.

PVP Ventures, the Noida-based Jaypee Group and Ahmedabad-based Adani Group were among the companies that had submitted bids for owning an IPL franchise in place of Deccan Chargers.

The BCCI had placed Rs 300 crore as the base price for the team. This franchise fee represents a premium of over 100 percent above the amount paid by DCHL in 2008.

The Board has made certain changes in its IPL rule concerning the teams that include complete right to terminate the contract if the franchise owner fails to pay the players. Also, whenever there is a change in their ownership structure, it has to be brought to the notice of the board.

Deccan Chargers were thrown out of IPL last month for non-payment of fees and other issues but Deccan Chronicle Holdings, challenged the decision in Bombay High Court to get temporary relief before the termination was confirmed on 13 October 2012. This was despite the fact that a day earlier the Chargers had found a buyer in Kamla Landmarc, a Mumbai-based real estate company. The sale to Kamla Landmarc wasn't approved by the BCCI and the Chargers missed the deadline given by the Bombay High court to furnish a Rs.100 crore bank guarantee to the Indian cricket board.

The Deccan Chronicle group has been facing a major financial crisis and had mortgaged assets of their IPL team to banks to raise funds. This was without the consent of BCCI and against the rules of the IPL.

A day after the Chargers' termination, the BCCI invited bids for a replacement. "Under this invitation to tender, the winning bidder will be granted the right to own and operate a new team which will compete in the IPL in each year from and including 2013 onwards," BCCI secretary Sanjay Jagdale said in the advertisement. The advertisement, placed in the Times of India, said that the new team had to be based in one of 12 named cities, including Ahmedabad, Dharamshala, Hyderabad and Kochi.

(With agency inputs)