The Board of Premiership Rugby had a scheduled meeting today which among other things considered options to support the next phase of growth for Club rugby in England.
Gallagher Premiership Rugby and the associated Premiership Rugby business has shown strong growth as its domestic and international appeal has continued to broaden, providing the backdrop for discussions to bring a new injection of investment into the game.
Audiences last season on BT Sport grew by 11% and that rise has continued this season. The competition is now shown in 200 countries and with Gallagher as title partner and the first-ever match on the NBC network (as opposed to NBC Sports) next month, there is a rapidly growing following in the US.
“Premiership Rugby has seen very good growth over the last five years with revenues rising more than 80% – so the desire to accelerate that growth and expand internationally was reaffirmed by all clubs today,” said Premiership Rugby chairman, Ian Ritchie.
“We had a very positive Board discussion and considered a range of alternatives to accelerate investment in the Club game. The Board was unanimous on how to proceed and agreed that selling a majority stake was not the preferred option.
“We shall now develop these options further with our advisors and the interested parties ahead of the next Board meeting.”