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About

Established in 2015, Rugby International Marketing (RIM) is the for-profit commercial arm of USA Rugby, tasked with monetizing the federation’s commercial rights and developing new revenue streams to fund the growth of the game in America. RIM is majority-owned by USA Rugby, but structured to attract inward investment from strategic partners.

The mission of Rugby International Marketing is to provide attractive financial returns to USA Rugby and its minority shareholders by utilizing third party capital in an entrepreneurially driven, for-profit company that leverages the commercial opportunities available to USA Rugby.

USA Rugby Corporate Structure and Ownership

  • Although a subsidiary of USA Rugby, RIM functions as a distinct for profit LLC
  • RIM ownership includes:
    • USA Rugby as the majority owner
    • Outside investors granted ownership interest in exchange for investment capital
  • The Rugby Channel is a subsidiary of RIM and is expected to have outside investors as well

Scope of Operations

  • Sponsorship sales for USA Rugby and affiliated properties
  • International event marketing and management
  • Event sanctioning
  • Merchandise licensing
  • Travel and hospitality
  • Commercial arrangements for Rugby World Cup Sevens 2018 (San Francisco)
  • Broadcast production and distribution
  • The Rugby Channel OTT platform, launched April 2016 (therugbychannel.tv)

Corporate Partners

Event Schedule

Feb. 2017
Americas Rugby Championship - USA v. Uruguay
Americas Rugby Championship - USA v. Brazil
June 2017
Club 15s National Championships
USA Men's Eagles v Tier 1 Nation
USA Men's Eagles v Tier 2 Nation
Rugby World Cup Qualifier - USA v. Canada
USA Women's Eagles v. TBD
Aug. 2017
Women's Rugby World Cup
Club 7s National Championships
Nov. 2017
USA Men's Eagles v. Tier 1 Nation (TBD)
Feb. 2018
Americas Rugby Championship
June 2018
USA Men's Eagles v TBD (3 games)
USA Women's Eagles v. TBD
Club 15s National Championships
July 2018
Rugby World Cup Sevens (San Francisco)
Aug. 2018
Club 7s National Championship
Nov. 2018
USA v Tier 1 Nation
Feb. 2019
Americas Rugby Championship
June 2019
Club 15s National Championships
July 2019
Pacific Nations Cup
Aug. 2019
Club 7s National Championships
Sep. 2019
Rugby World Cup (Tokyo)
June 2020
Club 15s National Championships
July 2020
Summer Olympic Games (Tokyo)
Aug. 2020
Club 7s National Championships

The Rugby Channel

Connecting the rugby community

Featuring live and on-demand coverage, including: International competitions, RBS 6 Nations, England RFU, Guinness Pro12, Americas Rugby Championship, USA Eagles, Club & College Rugby Championships


Highlights:

  • Available via mobile-optimized website, native smartphone and tablet apps
  • On-demand access to classic matches from archives of USA Rugby, Rugby World Cup and the RFU

Free Content includes:

  • Short-form video with match highlights
  • Interviews and bulletins
  • In-depth stats
  • Breaking news in world of Rugby

Key Achievements

June 2015: Formation of Rugby International Marketing

September 2015: Investment from England’s Rugby Football Union

February 2016: Launch of inaugural Americas Rugby Championship tournament

April 2016: Launch of The Rugby Channel

August 2016: Investment and commercial sales arrangement with CSM Sport & Entertainment

September 2016: Investment from five individuals and families who are long-standing supporters of USA Rugby

Leadership

Board Members

NameAbout
chad-keck Chad Keck Mr. Keck is USA Rugby board member representative. He works as a Vice Chairman of Needham & Company, an investment banking firm.
peter-seccia Peter Seccia Mr. Seccia is a USA Rugby board member representative. He is a retired Managing Director of Goldman Sachs.
brian-mclenahan Brian McClenahan Mr. McClenahan is a USA Rugby board member representative, where he serves as an international athlete representative. Mr. McClenahan works in commercial real estate for Cassidy Turley.
usa-rugby-digital-shield Stephen Brown Mr. Brown is a representative of The Rugby Football Union, where he serves as its Chief Financial Officer.
usa-rugby-digital-shield Sophie Goldschmidt Ms. Goldschmidt is a representative of CSM Sport & Entertainment, where she is a Group Managing Director.

Executives

NameTitleEmail
usa-rugby-digital-shield David Sternberg Chief Executive Officer dsternberg@rugbyinternationalmarketing.com
usa-rugby-digital-shield Melissa Brennan VP, Corporate Partnerships mbrennan@usarugby.org

FAQs

  • Why was it necessary to create RIM?

    The board of USA Rugby concluded that a for-profit entity with third party capital could grow commercial activities faster and more completely than USA Rugby alone. For example, with the investment from Rugby Football Union, RIM was able to invest nearly $500,000 in development of The Rugby Channel at a time when such development resources were not available to USA Rugby.

  • What are the ways in which USA Rugby benefits from the activities of RIM?
    • RIM pays USA Rugby a license fee according to the following schedule: $1,016,121 in 2016; $1,251,121 in 2017; $1,801,121 in 2018; and $1,077,301 in 2019.
      • Fees for 2020-25 will be based on first renegotiation; fees for 2025-30 based on second renegotiation
    • RIM is committed to distributing excess capital to its shareholders, at which point significant positive cash flow is realized. Current plans envision sustainable positive cash flow beginning in 2018.
    • RIM has allowed USA Rugby to strengthen its balance sheet through third-party validation of the business activities of RIM.
  • What is RIM’s investment strategy?

    RIM intends to invest capital resources in facilities, technology and personnel deemed instrumental to growing the business and profitability of RIM. RIM may use its capital to acquire licenses, tools and products. It may acquire other related businesses, although no such acquisition has been given serious consideration to date. RIM has invested considerable resources in the development of The Rugby Channel, its subscription-based digital media platform.

  • Who can invest in RIM?

    USA Rugby and the RIM board determine who can invest in RIM. To date investment has been limited to those parties in some way affiliated with USA Rugby and strategic parties (corporate, institutional or organizational) who can provide strategic value to RIM as a Shareholder/Partner. RIM’s board members and employees have not invested in RIM, although the Board has not placed a specific restriction against their investing.

  • Who are the investment partners in RIM to date?

    In mid-2015 England’s Rugby Football Union became the first outside investor in RIM with the purchase of a minority interest. In August of 2016, CSM Sport and Entertainment, a global leader in sports marketing, became a minority investor and the exclusive commercial sales agent for RIM. These strategic investors were joined in October of 2016 by five individuals and families with a long standing relationship with USAR Rugby and the rugby community. After these financings, USA Rugby continues to own a substantial majority of RIM’s membership units and has the right to nominate three members to the five-member board. Each of RFU and CSM has the right to nominate one member each to the RIM board.

  • Who is Rugby Football Union?

    The Rugby Football Union is the national governing body for grassroots and elite rugby in England, like USA Rugby is to the United States, with more than 2,000 autonomous rugby clubs in its membership. Its income is made up of funding from sponsorship, government, ticket sales from international matches, merchandise and licensing, hospitality and catering, a travel company, and television rights.

    The RFU hosted the highly successful Rugby World Cup in 2015.

  • What is RIM’s relationship to any other professional league or event in the U.S.?

    RIM has no ownership interest in or investment from any other professional event or league in the U.S. There is the opportunity for RIM to offer marketing services to entities not controlled by or affiliated with USA Rugby, and several such discussions are ongoing.

  • How will RIM continue to support and grow women’s rugby?

    RIM has the opportunity and duty to manage women’s events staged by USA Rugby. In this regard, RIM has the objective of maximizing the commercial value of such events. RIM will use its financial and business resources to this end. RIM’s financial success will provide resources to USA Rugby to be used at the discretion of USA Rugby to support the women’s game.

  • Who oversees RIM?

    RIM is governed by a Board of Directors and management team that owe fiduciary duty to RIM’s shareholders.

  • How does RIM fit with the other activities of USA Rugby?

  • About

    About

    Established in 2015, Rugby International Marketing (RIM) is the for-profit commercial arm of USA Rugby, tasked with monetizing the federation’s commercial rights and developing new revenue streams to fund the growth of the game in America. RIM is majority-owned by USA Rugby, but structured to attract inward investment from strategic partners.

    The mission of Rugby International Marketing is to provide attractive financial returns to USA Rugby and its minority shareholders by utilizing third party capital in an entrepreneurially driven, for-profit company that leverages the commercial opportunities available to USA Rugby.

    USA Rugby Corporate Structure and Ownership

    • Although a subsidiary of USA Rugby, RIM functions as a distinct for profit LLC
    • RIM ownership includes:
      • USA Rugby as the majority owner
      • Outside investors granted ownership interest in exchange for investment capital
    • The Rugby Channel is a subsidiary of RIM and is expected to have outside investors as well
  • Scope of Operations

    Scope of Operations

    • Sponsorship sales for USA Rugby and affiliated properties
    • International event marketing and management
    • Event sanctioning
    • Merchandise licensing
    • Travel and hospitality
    • Commercial arrangements for Rugby World Cup Sevens 2018 (San Francisco)
    • Broadcast production and distribution
    • The Rugby Channel OTT platform, launched April 2016 (therugbychannel.tv)
  • Corporate Partners

    Corporate Partners

  • Event Schedule

    Event Schedule

    Feb. 2017
    Americas Rugby Championship - USA v. Uruguay
    Americas Rugby Championship - USA v. Brazil
    June 2017
    Club 15s National Championships
    USA Men's Eagles v Tier 1 Nation
    USA Men's Eagles v Tier 2 Nation
    Rugby World Cup Qualifier - USA v. Canada
    USA Women's Eagles v. TBD
    Aug. 2017
    Women's Rugby World Cup
    Club 7s National Championships
    Nov. 2017
    USA Men's Eagles v. Tier 1 Nation (TBD)
    Feb. 2018
    Americas Rugby Championship
    June 2018
    USA Men's Eagles v TBD (3 games)
    USA Women's Eagles v. TBD
    Club 15s National Championships
    July 2018
    Rugby World Cup Sevens (San Francisco)
    Aug. 2018
    Club 7s National Championship
    Nov. 2018
    USA v Tier 1 Nation
    Feb. 2019
    Americas Rugby Championship
    June 2019
    Club 15s National Championships
    July 2019
    Pacific Nations Cup
    Aug. 2019
    Club 7s National Championships
    Sep. 2019
    Rugby World Cup (Tokyo)
    June 2020
    Club 15s National Championships
    July 2020
    Summer Olympic Games (Tokyo)
    Aug. 2020
    Club 7s National Championships
  • The Rugby Channel

    The Rugby Channel

    Connecting the rugby community

    Featuring live and on-demand coverage, including: International competitions, RBS 6 Nations, England RFU, Guinness Pro12, Americas Rugby Championship, USA Eagles, Club & College Rugby Championships


    Highlights:

    • Available via mobile-optimized website, native smartphone and tablet apps
    • On-demand access to classic matches from archives of USA Rugby, Rugby World Cup and the RFU

    Free Content includes:

    • Short-form video with match highlights
    • Interviews and bulletins
    • In-depth stats
    • Breaking news in world of Rugby
  • Key Achievements

    Key Achievements

    June 2015: Formation of Rugby International Marketing

    September 2015: Investment from England’s Rugby Football Union

    February 2016: Launch of inaugural Americas Rugby Championship tournament

    April 2016: Launch of The Rugby Channel

    August 2016: Investment and commercial sales arrangement with CSM Sport & Entertainment

    September 2016: Investment from five individuals and families who are long-standing supporters of USA Rugby

  • Leadership

    Leadership

    Board Members

    NameAbout
    chad-keck Chad Keck Mr. Keck is USA Rugby board member representative. He works as a Vice Chairman of Needham & Company, an investment banking firm.
    peter-seccia Peter Seccia Mr. Seccia is a USA Rugby board member representative. He is a retired Managing Director of Goldman Sachs.
    brian-mclenahan Brian McClenahan Mr. McClenahan is a USA Rugby board member representative, where he serves as an international athlete representative. Mr. McClenahan works in commercial real estate for Cassidy Turley.
    usa-rugby-digital-shield Stephen Brown Mr. Brown is a representative of The Rugby Football Union, where he serves as its Chief Financial Officer.
    usa-rugby-digital-shield Sophie Goldschmidt Ms. Goldschmidt is a representative of CSM Sport & Entertainment, where she is a Group Managing Director.

    Executives

    NameTitleEmail
    usa-rugby-digital-shield David Sternberg Chief Executive Officer dsternberg@rugbyinternationalmarketing.com
    usa-rugby-digital-shield Melissa Brennan VP, Corporate Partnerships mbrennan@usarugby.org
  • FAQs

    FAQs

    • Why was it necessary to create RIM?

      The board of USA Rugby concluded that a for-profit entity with third party capital could grow commercial activities faster and more completely than USA Rugby alone. For example, with the investment from Rugby Football Union, RIM was able to invest nearly $500,000 in development of The Rugby Channel at a time when such development resources were not available to USA Rugby.

    • What are the ways in which USA Rugby benefits from the activities of RIM?
      • RIM pays USA Rugby a license fee according to the following schedule: $1,016,121 in 2016; $1,251,121 in 2017; $1,801,121 in 2018; and $1,077,301 in 2019.
        • Fees for 2020-25 will be based on first renegotiation; fees for 2025-30 based on second renegotiation
      • RIM is committed to distributing excess capital to its shareholders, at which point significant positive cash flow is realized. Current plans envision sustainable positive cash flow beginning in 2018.
      • RIM has allowed USA Rugby to strengthen its balance sheet through third-party validation of the business activities of RIM.
    • What is RIM’s investment strategy?

      RIM intends to invest capital resources in facilities, technology and personnel deemed instrumental to growing the business and profitability of RIM. RIM may use its capital to acquire licenses, tools and products. It may acquire other related businesses, although no such acquisition has been given serious consideration to date. RIM has invested considerable resources in the development of The Rugby Channel, its subscription-based digital media platform.

    • Who can invest in RIM?

      USA Rugby and the RIM board determine who can invest in RIM. To date investment has been limited to those parties in some way affiliated with USA Rugby and strategic parties (corporate, institutional or organizational) who can provide strategic value to RIM as a Shareholder/Partner. RIM’s board members and employees have not invested in RIM, although the Board has not placed a specific restriction against their investing.

    • Who are the investment partners in RIM to date?

      In mid-2015 England’s Rugby Football Union became the first outside investor in RIM with the purchase of a minority interest. In August of 2016, CSM Sport and Entertainment, a global leader in sports marketing, became a minority investor and the exclusive commercial sales agent for RIM. These strategic investors were joined in October of 2016 by five individuals and families with a long standing relationship with USAR Rugby and the rugby community. After these financings, USA Rugby continues to own a substantial majority of RIM’s membership units and has the right to nominate three members to the five-member board. Each of RFU and CSM has the right to nominate one member each to the RIM board.

    • Who is Rugby Football Union?

      The Rugby Football Union is the national governing body for grassroots and elite rugby in England, like USA Rugby is to the United States, with more than 2,000 autonomous rugby clubs in its membership. Its income is made up of funding from sponsorship, government, ticket sales from international matches, merchandise and licensing, hospitality and catering, a travel company, and television rights.

      The RFU hosted the highly successful Rugby World Cup in 2015.

    • What is RIM’s relationship to any other professional league or event in the U.S.?

      RIM has no ownership interest in or investment from any other professional event or league in the U.S. There is the opportunity for RIM to offer marketing services to entities not controlled by or affiliated with USA Rugby, and several such discussions are ongoing.

    • How will RIM continue to support and grow women’s rugby?

      RIM has the opportunity and duty to manage women’s events staged by USA Rugby. In this regard, RIM has the objective of maximizing the commercial value of such events. RIM will use its financial and business resources to this end. RIM’s financial success will provide resources to USA Rugby to be used at the discretion of USA Rugby to support the women’s game.

    • Who oversees RIM?

      RIM is governed by a Board of Directors and management team that owe fiduciary duty to RIM’s shareholders.

    • How does RIM fit with the other activities of USA Rugby?