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IRFU steps in to help Munster’s difficulties

THE Irish Rugby Football Union provided an unbudgeted additional €1m in the 2015/16 season to the provinces (€250,000 each) to assist with the difficulties experienced by all in the player contracting market.
The increase of almost €6m in player and management costs arises, in large part, from the necessity to provide against operational amounts due from the Munster Branch, in light of their current financial difficulties, together with the aforementioned additional funding for all four provinces and various other items.
The Union recorded a surplus of just over €5m for the 2015/16 season driven by increased broadcast monies and revenue generated by participation in Rugby World Cup 2015. Over the same period costs increased by almost €5m from €66.2m to €71m ensuring the Union achieved a close to breakeven result in net cash terms.
Again demonstrating the importance of the Ireland team in generating income to support the game at all levels in Ireland, income generated through the national team amounted to €61.7m or 81% of the IRFU’s total revenue.
Tom Grace, IRFU Honorary Treasurer (pictured), speaking at the Union’s annual general meeting held at the Aviva Stadium said, “It is no secret that the increased revenues available to French and English clubs are having a serious inflationary impact on player remuneration. The Union’s response to this is to increase the player funding going forward for the provinces but more significantly to invest greater amounts into our player development pathways from the grassroots game upwards.
In our budget for 2015/16 an additional €3.2m was allocated to elite player development and €800,000 to the domestic game. For 2016/17 we have enhanced the domestic game investment by a further €1.2m. It is the view of the Union that these investments in our game represent the most effective way forward for the Union given the financial constraints under which we operate.”

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