The IRFU is set for a badly needed €70m cash boost after private equity company CVC closed in last night on a 14.5% investment stake in the Six Nations.
Reports from the annual meeting of the French Rugby Federation say president Bernard Laporte confirmed that CVC is “at the end of negotiations” with the FFR set to gain around €73m over a five-year period. On the basis that each of the member unions would be in line for a similar amount, the IRFU is set to prosper to the tune of between €12-14m a season over the term of the deal.
CVC has already purchased stakes in Premiership Rugby and the PRO14, but negotiations with the Six Nations had stalled because of the pandemic. There were fears that CVC may walk away or even dramatically reduce its valuation of the Six Nations.
“The health crisis has delayed discussions, but we are at the end of the negotiations,” Laporte said. “It is an opportunity for us. Between €75m and €80m will be redistributed over five years."
Although a breakdown of the deal has not been revealed, CVC have stuck close to their €330m offer to the Six Nations, according to reports. It is thought the unions will receive roughly the same amount though France and England will point to their dominant television markets. CVC will be responsible for the tournament’s commercial rights and could mean the Six Nations will move away from free to air television.