Asian-based Y11 Sports & Media invest in Ospreys
Asian-based Y11 Sports & Media company has become the Ospreys’ major shareholder with a 75.1% stake in the Welsh rugby region in what is believed to be a “multi-million-pound deal”.
Ospreys Chairman Rob Davies said “For some time now we’ve been planning a radical shift of gear and, from that, over 12-months of hard work and strategic planning has led to this new partnership. We needed to secure the success of the past, whilst embracing fully the future and that is what we are now doing together. We’re thrilled by the opportunities ahead.”
Who are Y11 Sports & Media?
The Hong Kong-based sports company, Y11 Sports & Media, sees its Chief Executive James Davies-Yandle and his business partner and financier Donald Tang join the Ospreys as new directors as part of the deal.
Y11 Sports & Media Limited is a company incorporated on 30 March 2017 in Hong Kong as a private company limited by shares entity.
James Davies-Yandle, formerly represented Wales at the 2002 Commonwealth Games and his father is a former rugby player for the Swansea rugby club.
Donald Tang, is a Shanghai-born businessman who now lives in the United States.
Davies-Yandle said in a statement on the club’s website: “Rugby’s potential has been overlooked for too long as other sports have been nimbler at seizing commercial opportunities to power success on the pitch with revenues off it. But the environment is changing quickly and rugby is on the verge of going through the same type of evolution as other sports before it.”
No actual financial details of the transaction have been revealed thus far but a new holding company, Ospreys International Group, has been established. The Ospreys have said, “all the financial benefits from the transaction are to be ploughed back into the region.”
Rob Davies remains as the Chairman and with the other pre-existing shareholders, collectively retain a 24.9% stake on the Welsh rugby region.
The Ospreys have been “searching for new investment since a proposed merger with Scarlets was shelved in 2019” reports the BBC. In the current season, which is on hold, the Ospreys have only secured two wins in 18 games. Mike Ruddock is the performance director and Toby Booth is the head coach.
The Ospreys compete in the Pro14 league and the European Rugby Champions Cup.
Davies-Yandle said of the deal and the club: “The Ospreys, from a standing start, have gone on to be one of the most exciting brands and teams in rugby. Of all the clubs we’ve seen, its potential to fully emerge and take the next step is far beyond that of its peers. We want to help it make that journey and be a part of that journey by investing in a root and branch transformation of the Ospreys, to ensure it leads the next wave of the game.”
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