The Walt Disney Company is set to secure worldwide rights to professional cricket as part of a reported $75 billion dollar deal to acquire a large chunk of 21st Century Fox.
The bumper deal would see Disney take control of a number of Fox’s key properties including the company’s movie and television studio, plus Star India’s network of 69 television channels.
Fox outbid Facebook to win broadcast and digital rights for the Indian Premier League (IPL) in September, paying $2.55 billion for the right to screen the annual cricket extravaganza.
Now the proposed deal would see Disney take control of cricket in the increasingly lucrative Indian market and beyond.
“Star India alone is by far the most successful TV network in the fastest-growing country,” Macquarie Research analyst Tim Nollen told Thomson Reuters.
It represents an exciting proposition for Disney, who already own ESPNcricinfo – the world’s most popular cricket website and one of ESPN’s most valuable brands.