Wasps aim high with bond launch


Published: Monday 27th April 2015 by The News Editor

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Wasps are to launch a retail bond listed on the London Stock Exchange in a bid to become one of the richest rugby clubs in the world.

The new 6.5% secured bonds, which launch on Monday, could bring between £25million and £35million into the club, allowing Wasps to compete with the likes of French giants Toulouse.

“We expect to be in that position either at end of this season or next season,” Wasps’ chief executive David Armstrong told BBC Radio Five Live.

Last year, the club bought the 32,000-capacity Ricoh Arena in Coventry and moved north from their previous home in High Wycombe, and the move has brought significant financial benefits.

“We were previously the second-lowest revenue-generating club in Premiership rugby. We are now the second highest in Europe,” Armstrong added.

“In terms of size of revenue, we will overtake Toulouse in the next few months. We are in a very strong position financially.”

While most of their Premiership rivals rely on broadcast rights for the bulk of their income, Wasps are able to profit from a concert venue, casino, two restaurants and a hotel at the Ricoh.

“This is creating a new financial model in rugby,” Armstrong added.

“The old model of either owning a purpose-built rugby stadium, or even being a tenant in somebody else’s stadium, has now been superseded by what we’ve done.”

Wasps, sixth in the Premiership, are already close to the salary cap, but the new finance raised by the bonds could allow the club to pursue the signing of a marquee player.

Published: Monday 27th April 2015 by The News Editor

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