Remgro CEO Jannie Durand says privatising South African rugby is the only way it can become fully professional and sustainable.
With a 55% stake in the Blue Bulls Company and a 25% share in Western Province Rugby (before the union’s liquidation), Remgro 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.
‘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 Rapport.
‘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.’