With the second-half of VIVO Indian Premier League (IPL) 2021 underway, Star India network is on track to breach the 400 million viewers’ mark on TV, for the fourth year in a row.
The marquee tournament has so far garnered 380 million viewers until match #35, 12* million higher than IPL 2020 at the same stage. The TV viewer aggregation is in fact higher than the last three editions of the tournament, since 2018.
Second phase of IPL 2021 got off to a brisk start with viewer engagement levels also being at a healthy average of 32% on a per match basis – at par with IPL 2020. As the tournament reaches its end with exciting clashes in the offing, including the playoffs, Star Sports is expecting millions more to tune in as the race to the playoffs heats up.
Commenting on the development, a Star Sports Spokesperson said: “We are proud to have delivered IPL to over 380 million viewers for the fourth time in a row. The last two occasions have been special as we navigated unprecedented circumstances and overcame challenges in bringing IPL to fans in the comfort of their homes. The business end of the IPL always generates a great deal of anticipation among fans that we captured in our campaign, #AsliPictureAbhiBaakiHai.”
“We look forward to a very competitive and immersive second half of the season before we head into the pinnacle of T20 Cricket, the ICC Men’s T20 World Cup, later next month,” he added.
The success of VIVO IPL can be attributed to Star India’s strategy of regionalisation and customer segmentation, whereby the tournament is presented in 8 different languages to cater to viewers in different states & regions and two additional customised match-feeds to cater to specific consumer segments (Select Dugout which reaches out to core cricket fans and cricket aficionados presented by some of the top T20 experts or the newly introduced Hotstar Dosts feed on Disney+ Hotstar which is a light-hearted take on the match presented by a combination of stand-up comics and guest commentators).
This combined with an incomparable slate of programming comprising Byju’s Cricket Live, Cricket Countdown and Game Plan provide Cricket fans well-rounded coverage of the tournament. The roster of franchise shows such as Knight Club (Kolkata Knight Riders), Inside RCB (Royal Challengers Bangalore), The Super Kings Show (Chennai Super Kings), MITV (Mumbai Indians) and Ye Hai Nayi Dilli (Delhi Capitals) stoke fandom for the respective teams and drive tribalism.
The consumption for VIVO IPL 2021 including Star Sports’ pre-match programming stands at 242 billion minutes.
With spots in the playoffs still up for grabs and at least six teams in the hunt, the league stage of the tournament promises to go down to the wire, which will generate even more excitement amongst Cricket fans, which will reach its peak on October 15 when the final of the tournament is played.
Currently, three-time champions Chennai Super Kings, led by MS Dhoni, sits at the first place in the points-table while last-year runners-up Delhi Capitals, led by Rishabh Pant, is at second.
Royal Challengers Bangalore and Kolkata Knight Riders occupy the third and fourth spot in the table.