Cricket South Africa has announced a wide-ranging commercial rights deal with Global Sports Commerce which includes international media rights and global sponsorship rights to CSA’s Mzansi Super League T20 competition.
GSC’s deal is for five years, from 2018 to 2022. GSC will also be responsible for producing matches and distributing the international feed, and will assist with event management and hospitality.
Negotiations between CSA and the Singapore-based agency began last month. Global Sports Commerce and its subsidiaries have almost no experience in media rights sales, but plenty in sponsorship and sports marketing. GSC has strong relationships with brands in key markets such as South Africa and India.
It is understood that GSC subsidiary ITW Consulting – an Indian sports marketing agency – will lead sponsorship sales for the MSL. GSC also holds a stake in South African sports marketing agency Megapro, a local sponsorship and advertising specialist, which will be responsible for sourcing local sponsors and advertisers
The deal aligns with CSA’s decision to give its media rights to public-service broadcaster the SABC in return for a large share of advertising revenue. The MSL will begin as a sponsorship and advertiser-funded league with a view to earning media rights fees over the next few seasons.
While global distribution isn’t a priority for the MSL in its first season, a media rights deal in India covering at least 2018-19 will be essential to attracting Indian brands to the competition.
CSA’s deal with GSC confirms that the IMG agency – CSA’s commercial rights consultant – will not be involved in the new competition. The Mzansi Super League will begin on November 19.