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Franchise cricket: The economic powerhouse of global sports

Nazmus Sakib Abid
17 May 2024 19:52:25 | Update: 17 May 2024 19:52:25
Franchise cricket: The economic powerhouse of global sports
— TBP Photo

The thrill of sixes, the roar of the crowd, and the electrifying atmosphere franchise cricket provide these spectacles that keep fans glued to their seats. And of this excitement, it is becoming so popular in the world.

Franchise cricket is a relatively new format in the history of cricket that has become increasingly popular in recent years for its fast and entertaining nature. Without these, it also provides opportunities for players from around the world to compete together.

It refers to the format of cricket where teams are privately owned and players are contracted by individual franchises rather than representing a geographic area or country.

There are 50+ cricket franchise tournaments held around the world like BPL, IPL, CPL, PSL, LPL, Big Bash, The Hundred, Abu Dhabi T10 league and also many more.

Indian Premier League (IPL) Is the biggest and most overgrowing franchise cricket league. They lead their tournament more professionally than any other around the world. That’s why their economic structure is more clear than any other’s.

There lies a complex business model that keeps these teams financially healthy beyond the on-field action. Let's dive into the various ways franchise cricket teams generate revenue.

Broadcasting rights

Franchise Cricket earns revenue from broadcasting rights through deals with television networks or streaming platforms. These deals involve selling the rights to broadcast matches live or highlights. According to The Sports Talk, The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) sold the media rights for Rs 48,390 crore. Nearly 45 per cent of the revenue generated for the 2023-27 cycle will be redistributed to all franchises. The teams will have an added incentive to reach the playoffs. These teams will get an additional five per cent whereas the remaining 50 per cent will go to the board.


The franchises earn money from sponsorship deals other than the central sponsorship of the league. The names of these sponsors can be seen on franchises’ jerseys and players even appear in a few advertisements.

The bigger the franchise’s reach, it will help them get better deals. For example, the Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) may not have won an IPL trophy but they have a better reach on social media than any other franchise.

Franchise cricket teams strategically contact the sponsorships to bolster their financial foundations and enhance the overall fan experience. Team sponsorships not only provide financial backing but also foster a sense of community and loyalty among fans.

Ticket sales

Franchise Cricket earns revenue from ticket sales by offering fans the opportunity to attend matches. Ticket sales represent a significant source of income for leagues and teams to generate revenue from various ticket categories, including general seating, premium seating, and hospitality packages.

Pricing strategies may vary depending on match importance, venue capacity, and the popularity of participating teams and players.

According to The United Indian, Despite a lower percentage of ticket sales (around 10-15%), the franchises still generate significant income by receiving a set percentage of the total revenue.


Franchise Cricket teams also earn revenue from merchandising through the sale of various branded products associated with the league, teams, and players. These products can include team jerseys, caps, scarves, keychains, posters, and other fan merchandise.

Franchises can create a diverse range of products that appeal to fans of all ages by leveraging the popularity of the sport and its star players. Merchandise is typically sold through official team stores, online platforms, stadium concessions, and licensed retail outlets.

Brand value

Brand value is really beneficial to the franchise cricket team. If a franchise makes a squad featuring elite players like MS Dhoni, Glenn Maxwell, Pat Cummins or Virat Kohli it will stand a better chance of attracting sponsors and investors.

Participating in the Playoffs or winning the trophy helps franchises to increase the value of their brands. As a result, it is easier to bring brands on board. This is how a franchise team earn money through brand value. One must note that the teams with the highest brand values in IPL are MI, CSK, and KKR because all of them have won the IPL multiple times.

Therefore, DC and PK might not have the same negotiating leverage with brands as teams like CSK and MI. It's crucial to understand that a team's historical results also impact brand value. Business titans like Neeta Ambani, as well as Bollywood actors like Shah Rukh Khan and Preity Zinta greatly contribute to that element as well.

Prize money

The prize money system enhances the legitimacy and equity of the competition. Undoubtedly, it is the major source of how franchise teams earn money.  The winner of the IPL 2024 will take home a prize of Rs 20 crore, while the runners-up take home Rs 13 crore. Teams who place third and fourth will also receive substantial rewards. They will take Rs. 7 crore and Rs. 6.5 crore. The team owners split the prize money with the players and management, though the largest share of this is kept by the team owners.

The winners of the Orange Cap (Most runs) and Purple Cap (Most wickets) receive a substantial monetary prize of Rs 15 lakh apiece as bonus prizes. Apart from that, the Indian Premier League also acknowledges several other outstanding performances. Significant prize money is given to the Emerging Player of the Tournament, Most Valuable Player, Power Player of the Season, Game Changer of the Season, and Super Striker of the Season, which encourages players to perform well on the field.

Impact on economy

Beyond the boundaries of the cricket field and understanding how franchises earn money, it's important to the light on the tournament’s impact on the economy. From tourism to advertising, hospitality to consumer goods, it catalyzes spending and investment on a scale unparalleled by any other sporting event in the world. Cities hosting franchise matches witness a surge in footfall, leading to increased revenue for hotels, restaurants, and local businesses.

Moreover, these leagues catalyze job creation, offering employment opportunities ranging from event management and hospitality to marketing and media. Its ability to generate employment and stimulate economic growth underscores its significance as more than just a sporting spectacle. It is a powerhouse driving economic prosperity.

With the ever-increasing popularity of cricket and the T20 format, the franchise team’s earnings are expected to continue their upward trajectory. This growth will likely lead to even higher player salaries, further economic benefits, and a solidified position for the global sporting powerhouse.