Australian Rugby Union Relying On $912,000 Fox Sports Broadcast Deal
Australian Rugby Union CEO Bill Pulver "will meet with Fox Sports this week" to finalize a A$1M ($912,000) broadcast deal for the proposed National Rugby Championship, according to Bret Harris of THE AUSTRALIAN. Pulver "is attempting to negotiate a one-year deal with an option for another, but the ARU still has some hurdles to overcome." If Pulver can extract A$1M from Fox Sports to televise the development competition, "it would be a major achievement." Fox Sports, which is the exclusive broadcaster of Super Rugby, "is believed to be demanding significant concessions from the ARU in return for showing the new competition." Pulver believes that "the new competition will not only create a development pathway in Australian rugby, but also become a revenue-raiser like the Currie Cup and the ITM Cup." The securing of a broadcast partner "is crucial to the ARU finding sponsorship" to cover the rest of the A$2M cost of the competition. The proposed investment in the NRC "comes at a time when most of Australia's Super rugby franchises are struggling financially" (THE AUSTRALIAN, 11/27).