The International Cricket Council (ICC) has extended its global partnership with soft drinks giant Coca-Cola for another eight years.
The renewed agreement will encompass ICC events across all three formats until the end of 2031.
Through the new deal, the Coca-Cola Company’s brands will become exclusive non-alcoholic beverage partners of ICC competitions.
The agreement includes all men’s and women’s events including the ICC Cricket World Cups, ICC T20 World Cups, and ICC Champions Trophies. During the partnership, there will be both a major international men’s and women’s event every year as well as a World Test Championship Final every two years.
During the recent 2023 ICC Men's Cricket World Cup in India, Coca-Cola’s Thums Up and Limca Sportz brands were the exclusive beverage and sports drink partners, activating a host of online and offline fan engagement activations.
By the end of the new contract, Coca-Cola will be one of the ICC’s longest-serving partners having first teamed up with the organization in 2019.
In September, the ICC named the IndusInd Bank financial institution as a global partner under a multi-year agreement.
The international cricket body’s portfolio of global partners also includes Emirates, Booking.com, Aramco, and MRF Tyres.
Anurag Dahiya, ICC chief commercial officer, said: “This long-term collaboration ushers in a new commercial era, filled with exciting prospects for the sport. With the men’s T20 World Cup in the USA and West Indies and the women’s edition in Bangladesh just around the corner, we’re poised for unprecedented global growth and engagement.
“This partnership not only celebrates our sport’s expansion but also promises innovative opportunities to enhance our fans’ experience worldwide.”
Meanwhile, the ICC has revealed that the 2023 men's Cricket World Cup broke broadcast and digital records globally.
The tournament, which saw Australia win their sixth title, registered a record 1 trillion global live viewing minutes of broadcast.
This represented an increase of 38% from the last edition of the tournament held in the Indian sub-continent, in 2011, and by 17% compared to 2019 when it was held in the UK.
The final between India and Australia at the Narendra Modi Stadium became the most-watched ICC match ever. There were 87.6 billion live viewing minutes globally, representing a 46% growth compared with the 2011 final that featured co-hosts India and Sri Lanka. The final also had 59 million peak concurrent viewers.
The event was shown by a total of 20 broadcast partners across 209 territories. For the first time, Hindi coverage was made available outside India by ESPN+, Fox Sports, Sky Sports, and Willow TV.
ICC chief executive Geoff Allardice said: “We are delighted to announce the record-breaking viewership and engagement numbers for the men’s Cricket World Cup 2023, making it the biggest World Cup ever.
“The incredible numbers continue to show the increased appetite for ICC events across the world and the consumption of innovative and engaging content that fans can enjoy.”
Unsurprisingly, the viewership numbers were most notably highest in host country India, where it became the most watched Cricket World Cup, with 422 billion viewing minutes on the Disney Star Network alone, resulting in a 54% increase from 2011 and a significant 9% rise from 2019.
The tournament was the most broadcast in India, with around five times more hours of coverage compared to 2011, thanks to the 22 channels that showcased the tournament across nine different languages (English, Hindi, Marathi, Gujarati, Bengali, Tamil, Telugu, Kannada, and Malayalam).
The female viewership share rose from 32% for the 2011 edition to 34% this year.
The final between the hosts and Australia became the most-watched men’s Cricket World Cup match ever with a peak TV audience of 130 million, while a total of 300 million people watched on the Disney Star network on linear alone in India.
The 2023 edition was also the most broadcast tournament in the UK and Australia with significant increases in viewership compared to 2011 when it was played in the same time zone.
The UK saw 800 hours of live coverage and 5.86 billion minutes (of live viewing compared to 4.74 billion minutes) in 2011, a 24% increase. In Australia, there were 602 hours of live coverage with 3.79 billion minutes of live viewing, 92% more than the 1.98 billion minutes recorded in 2011.
Coupled with Australia’s success, this led to a significant increase in overall audience with 9.1 million people watching India 2023 compared to the 2019 edition in England and Wales which saw 6.1 million tune in.
Pakistan saw record viewership with 237.1 billion viewing minutes – the corresponding figures were 230.49 billion minutes in 2019 and 220.63 billion minutes in 2011.
Last year’s tournament was also the most shown World Cup in South Africa and saw a 32% increase in viewership from 2019 with 5.01 billion minutes of live coverage watched.
In the US, a key growth market for the ICC, it was the most broadcast Cricket World Cup in the territory with 395 hours of live coverage, up 14% from 2019.
The final was the most-watched match with 48 million live viewing minutes, 47% more than the second most watched (India vs Pakistan). Nine of the 10 most watched games in the US featured India.
More records were broken on ICC platforms, with the World Cup becoming the “most digitally engaged ever” with 16.9 billion video views, a 158% increase from the previous record set at the 2022 men’s T20 World Cup in Australia.
Engagements on ICC social channels also saw a huge increase with a record 1.23 billion, up 142% from the 2022 edition and 155% from the 2019 tournament in England and Wales.
Web and app platforms set a record for users, with 97.5 million unique users for the event, a 29% increase from the 2019 edition. Page views on the ICC website were also up to 704 million, totaling a 96% increase from a year ago at the T20 World Cup in Australia.