The Welsh Rugby Union (WRU) has revealed how it expects the postponement of all rugby activity in Wales to impact its finances.
As the body prepares to distribute £1,000 to all of its clubs while attending to ‘high priority cases’ requiring more support, the WRU admitted forecasts for the financial year will fall short of profit.
Last year, the WRU reported a loss of £4.3m. In part, this was down to the decrease in income from its hospitality sector after Cardiff’s Principality Stadium hosted Anthony Joshua’s fight against Joseph Parker the previous year.
Five days on from announcing community rugby will be suspended, the WRU provided some transparency on the situation it faces.
“It is not clear when we will be able to resume playing. The indications are that it will be months rather than weeks before we can resume,” the WRU statement reads.
“Financially, the year was tracking to plan. However, circumstances have dictated that the current situation is abnormally challenging on and off the pitch.
“We have more unknowns than knowns. The WRU is forecasting a significant drop in revenue from international and club competitions. Our stadium events programme is also uncertain.
“As a consequence, we will make a substantial loss this year and we are forecasting a knock-on impact into the next financial year at least, as we expect it to take time for our operations to return to business as usual status.
“We understand and acknowledge that the situation is the same for all rugby entities inside and outside Wales, as it is for many Welsh businesses and organisations.
“We will stand alongside key stakeholders and partners in Wales, and in particular recognise our responsibility to play our part to bring stability.”
On Thursday came the announcement the body’s EGM (Extraordinary General Meeting), triggered by 34 clubs and scheduled for later in March, had been postponed given government guidelines.
Nevertheless, the future of Welsh rugby at the grassroots remains a high priority for the body.
“Our goal is simple,” the WRU added.
“We plan to emerge from this crisis with the WRU and all teams and clubs, whether they be amateur, semi-professional or professional, intact and able to have a sustainable future.