NZ rugby reveal financial loss
NEWS: New Zealand Rugby have announced a loss of NZ$1.9-million for the 2018 financial year at its AGM meeting in Wellington.
However, despite the massive loss, New Zealand Rugby bosses remain optimistic as the Union are still 44 percent ahead of budget largely due to NZ$68-million in commercial sponsorship and licensing income.
NZR Chair Brent Impey said 2018 set a benchmark for underlying investment in rugby at NZ$191 -million which was fueled by the profits of the New Zealand Lions Series 2017. Commercial success was driven by the sustained excellence of the All Blacks, and the increasing value of NZR’s teams in black with the Black Ferns Sevens and All Blacks Sevens teams particularly successful in 2018.
“Although we are pleased with our latest financial result these are still challenging times for rugby as we look further ahead,” Impey said. “The pressure to retain our talent and support the growth in our community game puts pressure on our long-term financial projections.”
He praised NZR’s commercial team for the growth of the commercial programme and the player services team who achieved an 87 percent success rate in retaining contracted players in 2018 in a competitive environment. Impey said pending broadcast discussions would be critical in setting NZR up for post-2020 success.
“Agility and pace are now mantras for us as leaders of the game. NZR can and must show leadership, but we need our stakeholders as partners. None of us have all the answers,” he said. “In this world, new cultures of co-operation, sharing of information, being open to new structures, and being prepared to question the status quo must be our new norm.”
NZR Chief Operating Officer Nicki Nicol said the significant profits generated by the New Zealand Lions Series had been invested in key areas.
“We need to ensure profits are spread over a number of years and in a Rugby World Cup year, we are aware that with the absence of the Series and an abbreviated Rugby Championship, results will be different in 2019.”
Nicol said strong underlying growth of 17 percent in commercial revenue (excluding the effect of the New Zealand Lions Series 2017), had driven investment back into rugby.
“The largest investments were in our people and the game with a record NZ$63-million spent on the player payment pool. A further NZ$32-million was invested into our 26 Provincial Unions and collectively they achieved strong underlying results in 2018.”
NZR recognised the importance of key partners and new partnership had been formed with Japanese companies.
Contracts had been extended with various sponsors.
Additionally, new commercial and brand initiatives such as All Blacks Coaching Clinics, the Official All Blacks Store at Auckland International Airport, and Ignite Seven had been launched.