10 Dec 2013

Taranaki to join Chiefs Super Rugby region

7:35 pm on 10 December 2013

The Taranaki Rugby Union is to transfer to the Chiefs Super Rugby region.

The Chiefs have announced their licence has been granted to a group comprising six provincial unions and private investors to operate the franchise until 2020.

The licence holding entity will be known as Chiefs Rugby Club Limited Partnership and comprises unions from Counties Manukau, Bay of Plenty, King Country, Taranaki, Thames Valley and Waikato.

The unions hold 50 percent of the shares in the Chiefs Rugby Club and private investors from Taranaki, Waikato and elsewhere the other 50 percent.

The shareholders have invested $3.3 million into the new entity.

Taranaki is transfering after being a part of the Hurricanes franchise area since the inception of Super Rugby in 1996.

New Plymouth will host two Chiefs matches next year against the Blues and the Waratahs, and two matches will be played there in 2015.

Taranaki CEO Mike Collins says the Hurricanes had offered to stage only one game every two to three years in Taranaki.

But the Hurricanes Chief Executive James Te Puni says he'd offered Taranaki two games next season.