Rugby: NZR, Rugby Players Association in 'positive meeting' to discuss Silver Lake alternatives

There's been a thawing of the relationship between New Zealand Rugby and the Rugby Players Association with a meeting today in Wellington to discuss an alternative to the proposed $387 million Silver Lake deal.

Earlier this month the Players Association and investment company Forsyth Barr made public an alternative to the proposed $387 million deal NZR is pursuing with US private equity firm Silver Lake.

NZR wants to sell a 12.5 percent stake in its commercial rights to provide a cash injection to the game here.

But the Forsyth Barr proposal values NZR's commercial assets at up to 23 percent higher and claims its plan to sell a 5 percent stake could raise up to $190 million and carries less risk.

Players Association head Rob Nichol said it was a "positive meeting" and it provided them with an opportunity to explain their proposal in greater depth.

"It was just a useful meeting...(the meeting) was an opportunity to go into the more technical aspects sitting behind the NZ Inc proposal. From a Players Association perspective we certainly found it useful and hopefully New Zealand Rugby and their advisors did too," said Nichol.

Nichol said the Players Association didn't seek to clarify questions they have around the Silver Lake deal as that wasn't the purpose of the meeting.

He said NZR has now gone away to further discuss the Forsyth Barr proposal and "we will all now reflect on the meeting and continue conversations in the days and weeks ahead."