World Rugby’s objective is to increase the competitiveness and sustainability of the global  game

Between 2009-16 World Rugby will have invested £350 million in game development, high performance, competitions and player welfare strategies across 120 national unions

Over the same period of time, global participation has increased from 3.3 million to 7.2 million participants worldwide

The financial driving force behind this funding model is the global commercial success of Rugby World Cup, which generates approximately 90 per cent of the revenues utilised by World Rugby for reinvestment in rugby worldwide from the playground to the elite game

RWC 2015 and the four-year RWC cycle ending in December 2015

In this cycle World Rugby will have invested directly and indirectly approximately:

£85m in tier one high performance unions or £8.5m each

£50m or £5m each in tier two performance unions

£28m in the remaining member unions and regional associations

The tier two figure includes a new specific allocation of £5m directly focused on the costs of preparation for RWC 2015.

In addition to the above investments, every participating union in RWC 2015 receives a participation fee of £150,000 [a further £75,000 if they reach the quarter-finals and a further £100,000 if they reach the semi-finals].

In percentage terms, this amounts to investments of approximately 52 per cent in tier one and 48 per cent in tier two/other unions.

This represents a significant redistribution of wealth as more than 85 per cent of the revenues for RWC 2015 are sourced from the high performance markets. The investments in the next tier of performance unions and elsewhere are starting to yield enhanced returns on and off the pitch in a number of those markets.