RFU reports healthy profits
November 19, 2008
Francis Baron has announced a strong financial showing from the RFU © Getty Images
The Rugby Football Union have recorded post-tax profits in a World Cup season for the first time.
The financial results published today show a profit of £1.5million for the year ending June 30, an improvement of £3.3million on England's World Cup-winning year of 2003/04.
The challenge for the RFU was to generate new income streams to cover the loss of the autumn international programme, which cost them £11.9million.
The RFU's travel company, England Rugby Travel, enjoyed their most successful year with revenues of £7.7million, an increase of £6.9million. The RFU earned £2million from five concerts held at Twickenham. The RFU strengthened their balance sheet, with net worth increasing by £7.2million to £141.8million. Turnover declined by £4.6million, from £103.7million to £99.1million.
The RFU increased funding to member clubs and constituent bodies by £0.6million to £19.9million. Community rugby investment increased by £1million to £16.2million.
RFU chief executive Francis Baron said, "Given that Rugby World Cup years are always financially challenging, it is pleasing to report that our financial performance was strong, that we exceeded expectations and that we invested an extra £1million in community rugby and still increased our balance-sheet strength further to £141.8million."
The RFU have signed new and improved sponsorship contracts with Nike and O2 and reached a new broadcast deal with Sky Sports. "This gives us a strong and solid foundation during a period of global economic uncertainty," Baron added.
"These renewed commercial partnerships show that rugby union continues to attract strong support even in difficult times, which gives us all reason to be optimistic for the future in spite of the gloomy economic scenario".