Mumbai: The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) is planning to relaunch its website www.bcci.tv and offer live video streaming of the national team’s upcoming matches with South Africa scheduled for early 2010.
The website, launched during the Champions Trophy in 2008, was hobbled by technical glitches. It would be premature to disclose details on advertising, said Ratnakar Shetty, BCCI’s chief administrative officer, who confirmed the move to revive the video-streaming effort.
“In all probability, the BCCI itself would take care” of ad sales, he said. Since Bcci.tv faced technical problems earlier, “this time we want to make it fairly watertight before we launch it”, he said.
The relaunch may affect other cricket websites and channel partners that have access to BCCI’s content.
The estimated Internet audience for cricket is between 300,000 and one million, said Saurabh Bhatia, chief business officer and co-founder of Vdopia Media and Software Solutions Pvt. Ltd, an online and mobile advertising services firm. “The online medium may get one-tenth of the advertising revenue of cricket on TV but it is growing,” he said.
The total advertising expenditure on cricket added up to Rs1,300 crore in the calendar year 2009, according to Nandini Dias, chief operating officer at Lodestar Universal Pvt. Ltd.
Ten Sports, owned by Taj Television Ltd, and NBC Universal Inc. teamed up to launch a site to webcast the series involving India, New Zealand and Sri Lanka in September. Ten Sports said it plans to bring exclusive footage from other nations, including Pakistan, South Africa and Zimbabwe.
BCCI’s website won’t have a significant impact because “BCCI has the online rights to their home games, and not away games,” said Peter Hutton, chief operating officer of Ten Sports. BCCI and the other cricket boards need to crack down on illegal feeds available on the net that cause revenue loss, he said.