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Finance

Report details extent of Wasps debt at time of administration

Featured image credit: Lewis Clarke/CC BY-SA 2.0/Edited for size

Featured image credit: Lewis Clarke/CC BY-SA 2.0/Edited for size

Wasps’ debts at the time of the Premiership rugby union club’s administration reportedly totalled £95m (€110m/$116m).

The BBC, citing a report from administrators FRP, said that Championship football club Coventry City, which shared the Coventry Building Society Arena with Wasps, was owed about £465,000.

Wasps was placed into administration on October 17, with its parent company Wasps Holdings Limited ceasing trading. A total of 167 employees were made redundant, including playing squads and coaching staff at the rugby club and the Wasps netball team.

CBS Arena’s operating companies – Arena Coventry Limited (ACL), Arena Coventry (2006) Limited and IEC Experience Limited – later applied to be placed into administration. On November 17, Frasers Group, a British retail company owned by Mike Ashley, secured ownership of the CBS Arena for a reported fee of £17m.

Earlier this week, Coventry confirmed that it had been handed an eviction notice by Frasers Group and the club is required to agree a new licence to continue playing at the CBS Arena.

The extent of Wasps Holdings’ debts at the time of the club’s administration have now been revealed. According to the BBC, Wasps and the three stadium companies owed more than £21m to public bodies.

The report highlights a £14.1m unsecured COVID Sport Survival Package loan from the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, administered by Sport England. Sport England clarified in a statement to the BBC that the loan was provided by the government and not Sport England, which acted as the loan agent.

The report goes on to state that £7m is owed to HMRC and more than £270,000 is owed to Coventry City Council. Some £35.2m was owed to Wasps bondholders, which received around £7.4m back.

Other companies hit by the administration included catering firms Compass, which reportedly lost £7.6m, and Delaware North, which is said to have been owed £4.5m.