Wallabies and Springboks approached by Middle East investors, report says

by MMC
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  • RA President confirms investor interest in Middle East
  • CVC also spoke to both unions about a potential deal

Rugby Australia (RA) and the South African Rugby Union (SARU) have been approached by parties in the Middle East over possible investment deals, according to the Daily mail.

Qatar’s sovereign wealth fund has reportedly contacted RA for possible investment, while Saudi investors have expressed interest in investing in SARU.

As well as attracting interest from the Middle East, the two governing bodies of the national rugby federations have reportedly held talks with a private equity firm. CVC Capital Partnerswho wishes to expand its sports investment portfolio.

CVC has already acquired stakes in Six Nations Rugby competition, as well as Premiership Rugby and the United Rugby Championship (URC).

“I won’t confirm any specific discussions with counterparties, but we are interested in the Middle East,” RA chairman Hamish McLennan told the Mail.

SportsPro says…

Despite recently recording its first surplus in four years, the RA’s finances still appear to be recovering from the pandemic. It will be would have finalize a new financing deal in November, with a loan of more than A$40 million ($25.7 million) expected.

The organization is centralizing national football, with New South Wales (NSW) Rugby recently accepted to cede control of the Waratahs Super Rugby club and its professional rugby activities. Increased funding would increase RA’s ability to take control of rugby teams from other public bodies, while promoting the development of the sport in Australia.

As for SARU, it is also still feeling the financial impact of Covid-19 and investments would go a long way to stabilizing the federation, while providing new sources of income.

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