ECB Reject Lalit Modi’s 10-year Buy-out Offer for ‘The Hundred’ – Report


Unwilling to jeopardise its cordial relationship with the all-powerful BCCI, the England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) has rejected a lucrative 10-year buy-out offer of their franchise-based property ‘The Hundred’ from former IPL commissioner Lalit Modi, the Daily Telegraph reported.

Modi received a life ban from the BCCI in 2013 for “serious misconduct and indiscipline” related to bids for two new IPL franchises in 2010. Modi left India and has been living in London since then.

Modi had planned the competition in peak English summer between July 1-August 15.

“Modi’s representatives met with Vikram Banerjee, the England and Wales Cricket Board’s director of operations, who is de facto head of the Hundred, and chief executive Richard Gould to lay out a 10-year offer to buy the Hundred and fund it through private investment. However, the ECB will not be pursuing talks with Modi,” the British daily reported.

The ECB isn’t ready to completely let go its ownership on their flagship property but also at the same time is worried about potential pitfalls of a partnership as “dealing with Modi would jeopardise its relationship with the BCCI.”

It must be noted that the ECB had received a similar offer from the Bridgepoint Group worth GBP 400 million for a 75 per cent stake in ‘The Hundred’.

“At the time, Richard Thompson, the ECB’s chairman, said he would only consider offers of a “few billion” and since then the ECB has pursued a strategy of selling equity in the teams, with the board retaining ownership of the competition,” the newspaper further reported.

Modi told Telegraph Sport that “he has lined up investors willing to pump money into a 10-team tournament but told the ECB the Hundred format does not work and should be converted into a Twenty20 competition instead.”

The team purse as per the offer sheet would have been USD 10 million per season (roughly INR 83 crore to IPL’s INR 95 Cr).

Modi’s estimated valuation of the competition was earmarked at USD 100 million a year over 10 years.

In fact, the former IPL czar had advised the ECB not to invite more than two IPL franchises to own teams.

His mantra was “franchises should be English-owned and English-run with minimal input from India.”

Modi had been in touch with the English cricket establishment for the past 18 months and wanted to make it the second biggest league after IPL.

“I would give them a guarantee of a billion dollars,” Modi told Telegraph Sport.

“A lot of people have been in touch with me interested in backing it and I made a proposal to the ECB but it had a lot of conditions. The Hundred format does not work and there should only be two franchises sold to Indian buyers. It will only work if it is an English competition and not Indo-centric,” he said.

The ECB believes it can raise GBP 100 million from selling equity (shares).

(This story has not been edited by News18 staff and is published from a syndicated news agency feed – PTI)



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