Rugby

Aerios dispute: WP Rugby hits back

2016-11-29 11:29
Paul Zacks (Gallo)

Cape Town - Western Province Rugby have accused Aerios, the company at the centre of an advertising rights dispute with them, of making “pejorative, defamatory remarks against individuals” at Newlands.

READ: Aerios 'fighting WP Rugby monsters'

This follows an interview given to Sport24 late last week by Costas Constantinou, chief executive of the advertising sales firm, in which he described provisional liquidation of the commercial arm, WP Rugby (Pty) Ltd - announced by WPRFU president Thelo Wakefield in early November - as a “fraudulent plot” to get out of agreements with Aerios.

Constantinou’s company have been claiming R72 million from WP Rugby over sponsorship agreements allegedly broken by them, saying they went behind their backs in negotiating directly with advertisers and sponsors.

They will oppose the final liquidation in the Cape High Court, scheduled for December 12.

Among other things, Constantinou accused WP Rugby CEO Paul Zacks of “being out to obstruct ... he has done nothing to resolve the situation” and Wakefield of “thinking he owns everything ... he thinks the buck stops with him”.

He said he felt like “one guy fighting monsters”.

WP Rugby did not initially reply over the weekend to allegations made by Constantinou in the interview, but on Tuesday sent Sport24 the following statement from Zacks: “Given our interactions with Aerios over the recent past, it comes as little surprise that their representatives have chosen to present pejorative, defamatory remarks against individuals in public.

“It is, however, particularly disappointing to see such comments in the public domain at this time, especially given the numerous efforts Western Province Rugby made to engage with Aerios to resolve these issues, with Aerios simply pursuing commercial advantage at every turn.

“The recent statements and claims put forward by Aerios in the media, in an unfounded public relations offensive which is clearly an attempt to justify their actions over the past year in particular, contain a number of factual inaccuracies.

“As this matter is sub judice, the true facts and circumstances in relation to the disputes put up by Aerios will be dealt with formally and on affidavit by way of the legal process on Monday, December 12, 2016.”

*Follow our chief writer on Twitter: @RobHouwing

Read more on:    wp rugby  |  cape town  |  rugby
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