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Adam Pearson and Private Equity rear their ugly heads again


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12 minutes ago, GUBRATS said:

This is the whole point of this PE nonsense , just what would the money be spent on ? , and who would have control of it ?

I must have asked this question 20/30 times , and nobody has provided a genuine answer , that's because there isn't one 

The solutions to RLs problems ( which are being exaggerated due to covid ) don't lie in more structure changes , they lie in making the game less attritional , working harder at making the overall game experience better , clubs can start to work on this next year 

I don’t think the games problems are just exaggerated by Covid, they are highlighting the weaknesses though. But I’d agree with you that making existing games more interesting and welcoming (and mostly exciting) would be a huge start.

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20 hours ago, Leonard said:

https://www.seriousaboutrl.com/firm-interested-in-buying-super-league-goes-under-41687/

LOL !

Short term fix that would be spent on wages (not that I am opposed to pay rises) and then once it is gone it is gone and then there is a long term drain on the finances of the game to the investors.

Without addressing the underlying issues of the game, it is no more a fix than giving an addict a pile of cash to sort himself out.

If Barrow can manage to up their crowds to about 20% of Hull's (a powerhouse in the sport) - then Hull need to look at themselves.

Spot on !  build from the foundations, get RL back in schools, support the amateurs  and the heartland ...... Pearson's suggestion is a 'sugar hit' to be burned on player wages and marketing consultants.

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5 minutes ago, Johnoco said:

I don’t think the games problems are just exaggerated by Covid, they are highlighting the weaknesses though. But I’d agree with you that making existing games more interesting and welcoming (and mostly exciting) would be a huge start.

My point with covid is we are 60% through the season before we could properly open the gates , so expecting fans to come charging in is crazy , next February testing positive shouldn't matter , so games should not be postponed or cancelled , a ST will be for a full season , there will be a GF to be won ( fairly ) , there will be promotion and relegation to be decided ( fairly ) 

Now is not the time for knee jerk reactions , it's time for sitting down and properly working out what is needed to improve the ' product ' and then how we are going to ( with the help of our broadcasters ) promote that to our fanbase , and build on that , not throw out what we already have looking for ' new ' 

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25 minutes ago, GUBRATS said:

This is the whole point of this PE nonsense , just what would the money be spent on ? , and who would have control of it ?

I must have asked this question 20/30 times , and nobody has provided a genuine answer , that's because there isn't one 

The solutions to RLs problems ( which are being exaggerated due to covid ) don't lie in more structure changes , they lie in making the game less attritional , working harder at making the overall game experience better , clubs can start to work on this next year 

There are literally only 2 things I can see PE money actually being good for. They are making sure every game is televised with a central production company, and infrastructure investment. 

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4 minutes ago, Tommygilf said:

There are literally only 2 things I can see PE money actually being good for. They are making sure every game is televised with a central production company, and infrastructure investment. 

Not buying Odsal ? 😱

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42 minutes ago, GUBRATS said:

My point with covid is we are 60% through the season before we could properly open the gates , so expecting fans to come charging in is crazy , next February testing positive shouldn't matter , so games should not be postponed or cancelled , a ST will be for a full season , there will be a GF to be won ( fairly ) , there will be promotion and relegation to be decided ( fairly ) 

Now is not the time for knee jerk reactions , it's time for sitting down and properly working out what is needed to improve the ' product ' and then how we are going to ( with the help of our broadcasters ) promote that to our fanbase , and build on that , not throw out what we already have looking for ' new ' 

So how come football fans aren't holding back from attending? 

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39 minutes ago, Tommygilf said:

There are literally only 2 things I can see PE money actually being good for. They are making sure every game is televised with a central production company, and infrastructure investment. 

Haven't we got the first one as part of the new deal from Sky? 

It'd be good if we ever got people to try and get the detail of this kind of thing. I expect that is worth a few million quid, but it doesn't seem to get talked about. 

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2 minutes ago, Dave T said:

Haven't we got the first one as part of the new deal from Sky? 

It'd be good if we ever got people to try and get the detail of this kind of thing. I expect that is worth a few million quid, but it doesn't seem to get talked about. 

I'm not sure exactly how that is to work tbh, are some just YouTube feeds of the stuff we see on the Super League Show?

If done properly, its definitely worth a few bob.

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26 minutes ago, Tommygilf said:

I'm not sure exactly how that is to work tbh, are some just YouTube feeds of the stuff we see on the Super League Show?

If done properly, its definitely worth a few bob.

I think it was quoted that we would get full multi-camera coverage that we could sell on and use. 

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1 hour ago, Johnoco said:

So how come football fans aren't holding back from attending? 

How many football games got postponed last season ? 

Their season is now starting at full capacity , ours was a third through before any fans allowed , and 2 thirds through now at full capacity , next year we need to be back to where we were at the start of 2020 season minimum 

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The problem I am sad to say is SL has become to many boring its the same old same old.

Bringing Toulouse in next season will be the start of something better, however unless the whole thing is revamped PDQ we will be a part time sport within 3 seasons if SKY pull the plug.

Sadly this is also the view of most of our great players over the last 2 decades.

 

Paul

 

 

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15 minutes ago, ATLANTISMAN said:

The problem I am sad to say is SL has become to many boring its the same old same old.

Bringing Toulouse in next season will be the start of something better, however unless the whole thing is revamped PDQ we will be a part time sport within 3 seasons if SKY pull the plug.

Sadly this is also the view of most of our great players over the last 2 decades.

 

Paul

 

 

This doesn't make much sense. Lots of sports leagues around the world are "same old same old", be it competing teams or the victorious teams. Why is Super League held to a different standard?

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2 minutes ago, M j M said:

This doesn't make much sense. Lots of sports leagues around the world are "same old same old", be it competing teams or the victorious teams. Why is Super League held to a different standard?

Because SL doesn't have the luxury of the popularity of those other sports leagues?

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1 hour ago, ATLANTISMAN said:

The problem I am sad to say is SL has become to many boring its the same old same old.

Bringing Toulouse in next season will be the start of something better, however unless the whole thing is revamped PDQ we will be a part time sport within 3 seasons if SKY pull the plug.

Sadly this is also the view of most of our great players over the last 2 decades.

 

Paul

 

 

That's always been the case if Sky pull the plug.

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11 hours ago, Dave T said:

I think it was quoted that we would get full multi-camera coverage that we could sell on and use. 

For non televised Sky (and BBC) games, sky will produce a minimum 8 camera set up, that Super League can sell on. 

This will be a high quality production (and from my point of view sadly allow video ref at all matches) 

It is worth a couple of million, and if done right Our League has potential to bring in up to £5m plus of revenue. 

20k buys of £150 online season ticket is £3m. 

Thus tv deal could be closer to £33m all in compared to £40m before. 

(Ball park £25m sky, £5m our league, £3m BBC) 

Worry is will it deter away fans? I'd therefore suggest that the 3 non televised games plus any championship games shown are sold at £15-20 for a weekend pass. 

So it's £15-20 for a weeks access to all live content, £150 for the entire season. 

Edited by Rugbyleaguesupporter
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16 hours ago, ShropshireBull said:

Yes we are a long way from a competitive series but that doesn´t mean the commercial income wont be there from the beginning for a well marketed tournament on fta. 

For me, the internationals sit on top as the pinnacle and also our biggest untapped financial growth area. Thus, my decisions are based around growing that. For me , Int and SL need to be sold as a 10-11 month bundle to start to claw back some of the 14 million we have lost. 

I'm not disputing any suggestions that the international game is a growth area, but it's not a panacea - particularly for the challenges at club level. 

Already you're qualifying what that international series needs to be - "on free to air TV" (how do we get FTA broadcasters to invest in a series that's unlikely to be competitive?) and "well marketed" (how do we get and keep a non-RL audience engaged in a series that, in the first few years, is unlikely to be competitive?).

I think the sentiment around the importance of international RL is absolutely right and, as I said, it's not an either/or situation but equally, I think that the most pressing priority is for the sport to back it's best horse to at least get some momentum and, crucially, some cash in the till. The long-term plan needs to start, but I wouldn't want to be putting all of the RFL's eggs in the international basket when France and Australia are holding the handle.  

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Just now, whatmichaelsays said:

I'm not disputing any suggestions that the international game is a growth area, but it's not a panacea - particularly for the challenges at club level. 

Already you're qualifying what that international series needs to be - "on free to air TV" (how do we get FTA broadcasters to invest in a series that's unlikely to be competitive?) and "well marketed" (how do we get and keep a non-RL audience engaged in a series that, in the first few years, is unlikely to be competitive?).

I think the sentiment around the importance of international RL is absolutely right and, as I said, it's not an either/or situation but equally, I think that the most pressing priority is for the sport to back it's best horse to at least get some momentum and, crucially, some cash in the till. The long-term plan needs to start, but I wouldn't want to be putting all of the RFL's eggs in the international basket when France and Australia are holding the handle.  

I think France are desperate to play us regularly so not sure about the handle comment. 

Yes it would need to be on FTA to generate comercial income.  Sponsors arent going to pay good money if it gets shunted behind a paywall.

On not being competitive I've done this before.  It's never going to become competitive unless you do it regularly so that other nations bar England can generate rev to pay for developement. 

Why would fta pay? Because live events that cant be dvr'd are significantly more attractive when tv is fighting for it's life against other forms of entertainment.  Sport consistently delivers those eyeballs.

Second sport skews male and younger, a demo that is craved by advertisers.  

Also we arent asking casuals to watch uncompetitive games every week of the year? It's 3 rounds and a final. They might only turn in for the first England game and a final.  Welsh fans may just watch their games.  Lets not forget regular games for France in a tournament with England is the best bet of getting French RL a FTA deal for the sport. 

 It is our Best bet to get that quick cash in the till you mentioned and I think makes SL more attractive for a FTA provider if they can bundle it with a regular international series. 

Long term it's a four week tournament that should generate some good revenue to change the narrative around our game. 

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5 minutes ago, ShropshireBull said:

I think France are desperate to play us regularly so not sure about the handle comment. 

The "handle" remark is based on both their willingness and their ability. If we're banking on France coming to the UK and being strong enough to make a series competitive, when evidence suggests that it might be some years before they are, then it's a risk. 

Quote

Yes it would need to be on FTA to generate comercial income.  Sponsors arent going to pay good money if it gets shunted behind a paywall.

Why would fta pay? Because live events that cant be dvr'd are significantly more attractive when tv is fighting for it's life against other forms of entertainment.  Sport consistently delivers those eyeballs.

Second sport skews male and younger, a demo that is craved by advertisers.  

That doesn't really explain why FTA (particularly commercial providers) haven't shown any material interest in RL up to now - even when we did have more regular internationals to offer - or even the many other sports that are crying out for FTA TV coverage. 

Broadcasters aren't going to pay for a spectacle that's likely to be a foregone conclusion by half time. Sponsors aren't going to pay to reach an audience that is likely to turn halfway through. And I don't think for a second that an international series between England, France and whichever P/T players we can find with Welsh and Irish grandparents is going to pull in those audiences that advertisers find hard to reach. 

Quote

 

On not being competitive I've done this before.  It's never going to become competitive unless you do it regularly so that other nations bar England can generate rev to pay for developement. 

 

How many times do you think we would need to play France, Wales, Ireland and Scotland before participation in those nations increases to the point where they can put together genuinely competitive teams? 

A tri-series against France is as competitive as you're likely to get and even then, I think it's a good few years away from being in a position where it genuinely captures the imagination. 

And the revenue that a Scotland v England or Wales v England RL fixture would generate would barely touch the sides of the problem - the real starting point here is the funding of development officers. 

Quote

 

Also we arent asking casuals to watch uncompetitive games every week of the year? It's 3 rounds and a final. They might only turn in for the first England game and a final.  Welsh fans may just watch their games.  Lets not forget regular games for France in a tournament with England is the best bet of getting French RL a FTA deal for the sport. 

 It is our Best bet to get that quick cash in the till you mentioned and I think makes SL more attractive for a FTA provider if they can bundle it with a regular international series. 

Long term it's a four week tournament that should generate some good revenue to change the narrative around our game. 

 

"We ask people to watch uncompetitive games now" isn't really a justification to start introducing more uncompetitive games. 

Again, I'm not arguing here that internationals here aren't part of the solution and I think we should be reducing the season so that, amongst other reasons, we can carve out a window for international RL, but it's not a panacea. 

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13 hours ago, Johnoco said:

So how come football fans aren't holding back from attending? 

Because their season has literally just started, Ours started in March when we were in Lockdown plus even out of Lockdown games were/are getting cancelled so there's still uncertainty.

You cannot compare the situation with footballs. Next year we should hopefully be able to sell a full season to ST holders plus hopefully no threat of games being cancelled.

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59 minutes ago, ShropshireBull said:

On not being competitive I've done this before.  It's never going to become competitive unless you do it regularly so that other nations bar England can generate rev to pay for developement. 

I do agree with the gist of what you are saying but I also agree with Michael. Super League needs to fix the problems it faces, the international game and just creating more internationals isn't going to help much there. Super League needs to be used to strengthen the international game and a whole game approach is needed. 

Competitiveness doesn't come from playing more. A full time team can play a team of half part time players 10 times and the results won't differ dramatically. The most important thing is to increase the player pool of full time players that countries have to choose. That means getting Toulouse in Super League and having 2 French clubs. That means another Celtic Crusaders type club, without the funds drying up and in Cardiff, to expand the Welsh player pool. That is what really begins to increase competivenness. That is what strengthens the international game.

It should also be strategic goal for Super League to expand its footprint and appeal to viewers and broadcasters in this way. The two go hand in hand, although I realise some will disagree about French and Welsh clubs. The trouble is we never see a whole game approach and these things are just viewed in isolation. The reality is there are strong crossover benefits in developing and growing both the domestic competition and international game. They should be used to help each other.

Edited by Damien
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46 minutes ago, whatmichaelsays said:

The "handle" remark is based on both their willingness and their ability. If we're banking on France coming to the UK and being strong enough to make a series competitive, when evidence suggests that it might be some years before they are, then it's a risk. 

That doesn't really explain why FTA (particularly commercial providers) haven't shown any material interest in RL up to now - even when we did have more regular internationals to offer - or even the many other sports that are crying out for FTA TV coverage. 

Broadcasters aren't going to pay for a spectacle that's likely to be a foregone conclusion by half time. Sponsors aren't going to pay to reach an audience that is likely to turn halfway through. And I don't think for a second that an international series between England, France and whichever P/T players we can find with Welsh and Irish grandparents is going to pull in those audiences that advertisers find hard to reach. 

How many times do you think we would need to play France, Wales, Ireland and Scotland before participation in those nations increases to the point where they can put together genuinely competitive teams? 

A tri-series against France is as competitive as you're likely to get and even then, I think it's a good few years away from being in a position where it genuinely captures the imagination. 

And the revenue that a Scotland v England or Wales v England RL fixture would generate would barely touch the sides of the problem - the real starting point here is the funding of development officers. 

"We ask people to watch uncompetitive games now" isn't really a justification to start introducing more uncompetitive games. 

Again, I'm not arguing here that internationals here aren't part of the solution and I think we should be reducing the season so that, amongst other reasons, we can carve out a window for international RL, but it's not a panacea. 

Did I not say we had to lock in the french and a welsh team so its full time players? I think I did. 

Again you have to start somewhere. The alternative, have nations play their level,  we have already done and it's financially worthless. 

When Eng played Scotland in 4 nations average audience was 1.6 million I believe. That game ended 38-12,  so I am not as worried about it as you.  The first year is the weakest but gradually it will grow. 

Italy get plenty in sponsors despite being woeful in 6 nations. I think it would be a full world cup cycle (4 years) before England are in doubt but within those 1st three years always a chance of an upset. Plus we're leveraging England to create interest in the other games. 

 

I think @Damien hit the nail on head.  We have to do it as a whole game solution. 

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20 hours ago, RugbyLeagueGeek said:

Do you think the domestic game is going to resonate with the vast majority of the country who don't really know what RL is, let alone whether they like it or not? I can only speak from personal experience, but Internationals are what got me hooked, and then I started following the club game after that. Likewise, internationals are pretty much the only thing (barring maybe the Challenge Cup final from time to time) that pique the interest of friends and work colleagues who otherwise have little engagement with the sport.

We've seen The Hundred being promoted all over the place the past few weeks, but it's cost the ECB an absolute fortune to do it. Other than the Premier League, I can't think of any other domestic sport in the UK that receives widespread attention. 

100 game will not last the course. Species all drunk - it will either kill off 20/20 or die itself. 

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38 minutes ago, ShropshireBull said:

Did I not say we had to lock in the french and a welsh team so its full time players? I think I did. 

Again you have to start somewhere. The alternative, have nations play their level,  we have already done and it's financially worthless. 

When Eng played Scotland in 4 nations average audience was 1.6 million I believe. That game ended 38-12,  so I am not as worried about it as you.  The first year is the weakest but gradually it will grow. 

Italy get plenty in sponsors despite being woeful in 6 nations. I think it would be a full world cup cycle (4 years) before England are in doubt but within those 1st three years always a chance of an upset. Plus we're leveraging England to create interest in the other games. 

 

I think @Damien hit the nail on head.  We have to do it as a whole game solution. 

I'm not trying to argue against the sentiment here because I do agree with the point that internationals are important, but I don't think it's smart to over-estimate the impact they can have - especially to some of the more immediate and acute challenges the game has. 

Yes, introducing Toulouse into Super League can help improve the French talent pool, but that doesn't change the fact a strong cohort of international and Super League standard players to fill a 20-man French squad is still probably a generation away. Catalans feel that they need to supplement their squad with overseas talent to be competitive, and a Toulouse team will more than likely do the same (in addition to the overseas talent they already have). The Frenchman that could captain a team to a series win against England is probably still nothing more than a twinkle in his daddy's eye. 

I want to see England play France more often, but I'm under no illusion that it is going to be at least 10, and more likely 20, before any such series is taken seriously by broadcasters, sponsors and supporters (because the evidence to date suggests that there are issues getting all three interested) - and that's assuming that the investment from TOXIII, Catalans and the FFRXIII is put in the right places. 

So yes, playing France, Wales, Ireland and Scotland more regularly is a long-term play, but you also need an awful lot of short-term focus as well. We shouldn't talk about the short-term as if it's a bad thing - you need that as much as you need the long. 

The sport has two years to prove that it can add value to Sky and uphold the value of its TV deal. An international series against France on the BBC is not the answer to that problem. 

Edited by whatmichaelsays
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