Nine urged to push for better Cricket deal

Global investment bank UBS has urged Nine to sort itself a better broadcasting deal with Cricket Australia or drop its interest entirely.

UBS media analyst Eric Choi wrote to clients, “The existing cricket deal costs Nine circa $100 million per annum.

“We estimate the existing deal likely only generates gross revenues of $60-$70 million.

“We think it would seem logical for Nine to enter negotiations with the following mindset: i) More cricket content at no additional cost, or ii) to step away from the cricket contract.”

But Nine’s links with Cricket are historic, dating back to Kerry Packer’s revolutionary move in the 1970s.

It doesn’t want less Cricket. It wants more, especially given the lure of Sport in attracting Live Free to Air viewers.

“We want Test matches, we want one-dayers, we want Twenty20s and we want the Big Bash,” Nine’s Head of of Sport Tom Malone has previously said.

However TEN’s precarious financial position may prove fortuitous timing for Nine.

In 2013 Nine paid nearly $500 million for a five-year deal for international cricket while TEN paid just $20 million for the Big Bash League. Given TEN’s success with the latter the next round of rights are set for a lift at a time when it is staring down a looming deadline on its $200m loan.

Cricket Australia indicated it was confident of attracting interest for its 2018-2023 rights.

Nine declined to comment.

Source: Fairfax


  1. As usual, banks and accountants telling TV stations how to run their own business

    Did no-one learn anything from the Ch 9 debacle a few years ago, and the ongoing 10 problems

  2. I think everyone is here is correct in saying that 7 and TEN are not really interested. However the way I see it they were never really going to be in it.

    The true contest here is with Optus Sport and Fox Sports. Optus already has a deal with Cricket Australia and would be definitely looking to expand it with exclusivity to bigger events and Fox is always looking for something to boost their portfolio.

  3. Seven don’t need the cricket. The main aim of summer sport is to promote what’s coming up when ratings season starts in Feb. the Aus Open already serves this purpose for seven

  4. jezza the first original one

    The money is not there for a strongly competitive auction. Ch9 are in with a chance here. Ch10 finances are a disaster, Ch7 don’t need the cricket. I agree about ch9s team, boring as hell

    • Not sure how Seven having AFL would affect going for the cricket or not? It gets eyeballs over summer when no footy is played.

      The biggest problem Seven would have with cricket would be two weeks of the Australian Open overlapping with many games. If they had the cricket they’d have potentially tennis on 2 channels and cricket on another – but only one could be in HD (based on the current arrangement of channels).

      • There is more than the 2 weeks of the Australian Open tennis wise on Seven. Seven basically have 2 channels of Tennis running already from the end of December onwards when you include all the lead up tournaments. I would argue Seven will stay away from it as they are plenty busy as it is. With TEN basically out of the picture now, all the recent talk is Nine knowing they will have no serious contender and therefore possibly being able for a change to force the price down, as they should.

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