Operation to save WP Rugby underway
REACTION: Liquidators are currently hard at work trying to rescue the embattled commercial arm of the Western Province Rugby Football Union.
Western Province Rugby (Pty) Limited was placed into final liquidation by the Western Cape High Court on Tuesday after Judge Ashley Binns-Ward dismissed allegations that th WPRFU brains trust were using a 'legal loophole' to obtain the liquidation and avoid the damages claim of around ZAR70-million from Aerios, a company whose stated commercial focus is to sell sponsorship rights in sport.
With the court proceedings over, Joint Provisional Liquidator Chris van Zyl said the priority for his team right now is to ensure that they obtain funds to pay salaries for the month of December.
"We as liquidators have the power to borrow monies and that is what we are concentrating our efforts on at this stage," Van Zyl told rugby365.
"We can approach various parties and stakeholders to try to obtain a loan from them to pay in particular the salaries for December and that is our priority and objective at this stage.
"This will ensure the preservation of all staff contracts and in particular the players, coaches etc."
It was confirmed that shareholders Remgro provided a 'bridging loan' to the WPRFU to help them cope with their immediate obligations towards players and staff, as well as running costs.
Van Zyl said that they will do their best to find a willing and able purchaser for the business of Western Province Rugby. However, at this stage, they only have one interested party.
"Liquidators have the power to sell the business by private treaty, public auction or public tender," Van Zyl told rugby365.
"I think it is common cause that to maximise the return on value that the best modus operandi of selling the business would be on a going concern basis.
"Any prospective purchaser out there who is interested in buying will engage with the liquidators as soon as possible.
"We have had an initial indication from one party through their attorneys and we are awaiting their further communication.
"Unfortunately, I am not at liberty to disclose their name at this stage.
"If there is eventually only one offer then the liquidators must decide whether that offer constitutes proper value or whether we would get a better price on a breakdown basis which is highly unlikely in my opinion."