The Competition Commission of India (CCI) slapped a penalty of INR 52 crores ($10.4 million) on Board for Control of Cricket in India (BCCI) for the abuse of its dominant position.
The Commission said “BCCI’s economic power is enormous as a regulator that enables it to pick winners. BCCI has gained tremendously from IPL format of the cricket in financial terms. Virtually, there is no other competitor in the market nor was anyone allowed to emerge due to BCCI’s strategy of monopolizing the entire market. The policy of BCCI to keep out other competitors and to use their position as a defacto regulatory body has prevented many players who could have opted for the competitive league. The dependence of competitors on BCCI for sanctioning of the events and dependence of players and consumers for the same reason has been total. BCCI knowing this had foreclosed the competition by openly declaring that it was not going to sanction any other event. BCCI undermined the moral responsibility of a custodian and defacto regulator.”
The Commssion also directed BCCI: –
i) to cease and desist from any practice in future denying market access to potential competitors, including inclusion of similar clauses in any agreement in future.
ii) to cease and desist from using its regulatory powers in any way in the process of considering and deciding on any matters relating to its commercial activities. To ensure this, BCCI will set up an effective internal control system to its own satisfaction, in good faith and after due diligence.
iii) To delete the violative clause 9.1(c)(i) (“BCCI represents and warrants that it shall not organize, sanction, recognize, or support during the Rights period another professional domestic Indian T20 competition that is competitive to the league”) in the Media Rights Agreement.