The Saudi Arabian Public Funding Fund is reportedly in discussions with 4 top-flight rugby golf equipment over pouring cash into the game. It’s claimed that Premiership sides Gloucester, Leicester Tigers, Newcastle Falcons and Northampton Saints have all been concerned in talks that would see the Saudi sovereign wealth fund take management of stadium naming rights and arrange a rugby academy within the Center East.
It’s claimed that Gloucester have been initially seen as a solitary goal for PIF, who personal an 80 per-cent majority stake in Premier League membership Newcastle United. Nevertheless, the membership alone weren’t seen as enticing sufficient of a proposition.
So as to add higher worth to a possible deal, Leicester, Newcastle and Northampton have been reportedly dropped at the negotiating desk. Leicester and Northampton are among the many best-supported golf equipment within the sport.
In keeping with the Telegraph, PIF’s funding could possibly be price round £60m to the golf equipment concerned, with potential offers valued at seven-figures every. It could be a serious settlement for a sport that misplaced three of its top-flight golf equipment to chapter in a 10-month interval final yr.
A determine with information of the talks reportedly advised the newspaper: “Conversations between potential future traders within the sport often happen. Traders see the headroom for progress within the golf equipment.”
Discussions are reported to have ‘slowed’ in current weeks. One of many 4 golf equipment is claimed to have established a direct line of contact with the funding group to discover the potential of particular person funding ought to the joint try fail.
The Rugby Soccer Union’s guidelines concerning membership possession state that any change of 10 per-cent or much less doesn’t require a green-light from the governing physique. That differs from soccer the place the homeowners’ and administrators’ check is in place for all shareholders.
Discussions have reportedly concerned the Saudi funding fund gaining management over stadium naming rights. A rugby academy is also arrange in Saudi Arabia, boosting the game’s recognition within the Gulf nation.
Saudi Arabia has invested enormously into sport lately. Final July, the Guardian reported that PIF had invested £4.9billion into sport since early 2021. The fund bought an 80 per-cent stake in Premier League membership Newcastle in October 2021.
It additionally invested round £1.5 billion to create LIV golf, the controversial golf tour that this week lured Tyrell Hatton from the PGA tour. Human rights teams have accused PIF’s big funding in sport as an try to distract from Saudi Arabia’s human rights report.