Privatisation the only way forward for SA rugby - Remgro boss
Cape Town - Privatisation of rugby franchises is the way forward for South African rugby.
This is the view of Jannie Durand, the CEO of Remgro, who told Netwerk24 that privatising South African rugby is the only way it can become fully professional and sustainable.
"To lure more investors, our rugby has to become more professional. There are too many unions in the South African set-up, meaning the money is being shared among too many professional sides," Durand told the Afrikaans publication.
There are currently 14 professional provinces in South African rugby, as well as six franchises participating in Super Rugby and PRO14.
Remgro has a 55% stake in the Blue Bulls Company and recently had a 25% share in Western Province Rugby before the union’s liquidation.
The Stellenbosch-based investment holding company is one of the few big investors in local rugby but with unions facing increasing financial difficulty, Durand believes more private shareholders will alleviate the burden.
"We have more than 900 professional players when in reality we don't need any more than 400. Privatising the game can help with that. And I don't think SA Rugby is against this plan, but politics are delaying the process. We've been trying to implement this for so long.
"If we can't privatise rugby in terms of private shareholding with people who are willing to invest their time and money, then I don’t see how SA Rugby can implement a sustainable model going forward."