Rugby Trade Directory

"Reach over Revenue" a success for Rugby World Cup

Rugby League World Cup chief executive Jon Dutton says choosing "reach over revenue" has helped make this year's tournament a "resounding success".

For the first time, the men's, women's and wheelchair competitions have been staged at the same time after a year's delay because of the pandemic.

That affected ticket sales, but all games being shown live on the BBC has resulted in record TV figures.

"We've got a new audience the sport didn't have," said Dutton.

"They've been attracted by how brilliant wheelchair rugby is to consume, for example, and what's happened here in the women's game is transfor­ma­tional.

"Different people will have a different take but, for us, the structure has been a resounding success."

"We've had limited broadcast revenue and we've chosen reach over revenue in that regard, which was the right decision," Dutton added. "We made it free-to-air rather than going behind a paywall.

"We've got 15 commercial partners who are new to the sport and then there's a balance to make up from ticket revenue. There's no profit.

"I think the business model for the tournament could be improved upon significantly and that's part of our learning."

Posted in Club news on