International law firm, Bird & Bird, acts for the organiser of the Guinness PRO14 rugby union tournament, Celtic Rugby DAC, on a strategic investment by CVC Capital Partners.
Bird & Bird acted for Celtic Rugby DAC, the Dublin-based organiser of the Guinness PRO14 rugby union tournament, on all aspects of a transformative strategic investment from CVC Capital Partners Fund VII, announced at the end of May 2020. The Guinness PRO14 is an annual cross-border club rugby union tournament featuring professional teams from Ireland, Scotland, Wales, Italy and South Africa.
The significant investment will allow Celtic Rugby DAC, as well as its shareholders - the Irish, Italian, Scottish and Welsh rugby unions - to continue investing in the sport of rugby union at all levels of the game. Notably, a portion of the investment will be held centrally, within the Guinness PRO14, for the board to use in developing the business and upgrading league operations in line with its growth ambitions.
The transaction required close co-operation between Bird & Bird's specialist international Media, Entertainment and Sports group and its international Corporate team. The core team at Bird & Bird acting on the matter included partners, Max Duthie (Media, Entertainment and Sports), Helen Gavin-Brown (Corporate), Craig Giles (Media, Entertainment and Sports) and Richard Eccles (Competition); senior associate, Richard Bloomfield (Corporate); associate, Laura Tyler (Corporate) and a team of associates and trainee solicitors drawn from across the broader firm. The team worked closely with Celtic Rugby DAC and with the Irish, Italian, Scottish and Welsh rugby unions.
Max Duthie, partner at Bird & Bird, commented: "We are delighted to have been involved in such a high profile and significant transaction for professional rugby union, particularly given the current difficult economic circumstances. We have worked closely with Celtic Rugby for many years, advising on all aspects of its business. This transaction is an excellent example of our team's ability to advise on and facilitate major corporate deals in the sports sector. I am excited to see how the investment will accelerate the growth of rugby union and development of the PRO14 over the coming years".