Boland, Pumas join Bulls Super Rugby family
Pretoria - The Blue Bulls Rugby Union on Friday announced that they have entered into a partnership agreement with Boland and the Pumas rugby unions regarding the Bulls franchise for Vodacom Super Rugby.
Barend van Graan, CEO of the Blue Bulls Company expressed the franchise’s eagerness and excitement about the partnership
“The Bulls are excited about the partnership, as we firmly believe that this strategic relationship will not only benefit the teams involved but will certainly enhance rugby in the various regions, ultimately strengthening the franchise and improving the Bulls performances in the long term.”
The sustainability of franchise and provincial rugby is under threat, and the teams involved understand the need to change their strategies and way of thinking in order to establish and develop successful management and financial models going forward.
Furthermore, the partnership will establish a platform for the development of rugby players on and off the field of play, and equip players with skills to effectively function outside the rugby environment as well. The franchise and the provinces will not only work on professional rugby, but also on amateur level where the need exists.
The teams have already started exploring options on video-conferences so that the coaches, management and even administrators will have a better and more direct means of communication and interaction.
“This is so much more than just what happens on the field,” explained Van Graan “We are also looking at synergy in generating new and alternate forms of revenue, which may involve common sponsorship and commercial agreements between the teams.”
Ivan Pekeur, president of Boland Rugby Union said that it is a massive honour to be part of this amazing venture going forward.
“It’s an honour for not only the professional rugby players, but also for the 15 000-strong registered club players in our region, and let’s not forget about the huge number of Bulls supporters in the area as well. I firmly believe that this strategic relationship will benefit Boland and the Bulls simultaneously. One of the immediate benefits is that the Bulls will sponsor our referees clothing and apparel on all levels, with the Bulls logo be clearly visible on the clothing.”
Pieter Burger, CEO of the Pumas Rugby union emphasised and reiterated the need for the teams to share the belief, and ultimately contribute to the greater good of the game
“The historical track record of inter-union partnerships within SA Rugby has been dismal to say the least. It was fraught with mistrust, breaches of agreements and personal gain at the cost of the actual partnership. The Pumas consciously decided to take a page from the past and ensure that lessons are learnt from previous failed relationships amongst all nnions. We found the same refreshing approach at the Bulls, and this sparked an extensive series of robust debates regarding the key outcomes of a proposed partnership. No emotional decisions were made, nor short term financial gain agendas driven.
“There is a lot of synergy between the two organisations in terms of ethics and business culture, this alone assisted greatly in the successful completion of negotiations. We view our relationship with the Bulls as a long-term strategic partnership, not just a non-franchise Union that has nothing to offer. Thank you to the Bulls for acknowledging not only our value adds, but our potential and uniqueness.”
The Bulls are also in negotiations with the Border Rugby Union regarding a similar agreement, and further details regarding these negotiations will be released in the near future.