Riding the gravy train.
Vox & Co. has been enjoying the ICC T-20, and wondering how lucrative it is to host a tournament like the ICC T-20 World Cup. The shorter format of the game, no doubt, lends itself to a wider audience (women, less patient people etc.) expanding cricket’s addressable market beyond what’s often possible in 50 over matches.
Broadcasters have jumped quite surefootedly on the bandwagon – ESPN bought broadcasting rights to the tune of close to $50 million alone. Corporates are getting enormous mileage and have sliced and diced their advertising formats to keep up with the shorter attention span of these newer views (we think shrinking the screen by 33% so that Reliance can push its new family package is annoying, but whatever, I’m not the one buying a Reliance mobile package.)
We think, that this tournament is going to make around (if not more than) $130 million in revenues for the ICC (that’s around 20% growth on, conservatively, the 2011 T-20 World Cup). This is using any publicly available, or reported statistics. Actual revenues through ticket sales are impossible to estimate (e.g. the face value on a corporate box ticket is $9, but realistically, with several bells and whistles, and palms to oil, a corporate box ticket is worth around $300).
We also think, that the ICC has spent around $40 million, including $30 million of direct spend, grants and loans to Cricket Sri Lanka, to host the tournament on the island. That leaves the ICC with - again on the conservative side – $90 million in profits.
So the larger question remains, why couldn’t we afford better cheerleaders?
P.S. If you’ve got better numbers or colourful opinions on how lucrative cricket is, we’d love to hear them.