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Premiership Rugby details CEO succession plan

Premiership Rugby, the organising body of the top division of English rugby union, has announced that Mark McCafferty will step down as chief executive in June and will be replaced by Darren Childs, chief executive of multichannel broadcaster UKTV.

McCafferty will complete his term as chief executive at the end of the current Premiership season. He will then become an advisor to CVC Capital Partners, the private equity firm that in December sealed a deal to acquire a 27-per-cent stake in Premiership Rugby.

Childs announced in February that he would be stepping down from his current role at UKTV and has more than 25 years of experience in senior roles in global media.

McCafferty has led Premiership Rugby for 14 years. During his tenure, McCafferty negotiated three major broadcast deals which more than tripled media revenues and last year concluded a new title partnership with US insurance group Gallagher, positioning Premiership Rugby for the next phase of its international development.

McCafferty also brokered the clubs’ negotiation of two successive long-term agreements with the Rugby Football Union (RFU), which consolidated the club and country partnership in England. He established the Professional Game Board, on which he will continue to represent the clubs.

McCafferty said: “Gallagher Premiership Rugby has become a brilliant and captivating competition for our fans, as the closeness of this season fully demonstrates, and it does what we believe professional sport should always do – demand excellence, create intense rivalry but mutual respect, and inspire people of all ages to become part of it.

“I am looking forward to ensuring an effective transition with Darren and to my continued involvement in rugby, working from a new vantage point alongside CVC.”

Childs added: “I am excited about the challenge that working in a new industry brings, especially one on the cusp of a transformation like rugby. I have always admired the values rugby demonstrates on the pitch and in the community and it will be a fantastic opportunity to work with the clubs, and the board to create even more fans of the sport.”