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IRFU in line for €40m windfall after striking bumper deal

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'The IRFU is set to receive €40m.' Stock image

'The IRFU is set to receive €40m.' Stock image

SPORTSFILE

'The IRFU is set to receive €40m.' Stock image

The IRFU is in line for a €40m cash injection after the PRO14 agreed a deal in principle to sell a 27 per cent stake in the league to private equity firm CVC Capital.

Along with the Welsh, Scottish, South African and Italian unions, the IRFU are partners in the tournament and all parties are set to benefit from the €140m deal.

CVC have taken a similar stake in Premiership Rugby and are in advanced talks with the Six Nations in a move that would see them emerge as major players in the European game.

The deal would see the private equity firm - which owned Formula One between 2006 and 2017 - take control of the league's commercial rights, mirroring the deal with English clubs.

"Celtic Rugby DAC and its shareholders can confirm a request has been filed to the Irish Competition and Consumer Protection Commission for Merger and Acquisition clearance by CVC Capital Partners," read a statement from Celtic Rugby DAC. "The request has been made in relation to a potential transaction involving Celtic Rugby DAC and CVC Capital Partners.

"Both parties are involved in advanced discussions."

WRU chairman Gareth Davies welcomed the deal.

"The rugby element will be controlled by the Unions and professional team," he said. "Rugby is not always good at working together. It probably needs an external partner to knock heads and more commercialise what is regarded as an underexploited sport."

Irish Independent