Rugby AU announce operational restructure

by Rugby Australia

Rugby Australia has today announced another stage in its operational restructure as it continues to refine its core business services and future financial model.

Rugby Australia’s operational review is ongoing with the aim of reducing $15 million in operating costs from Australian Rugby over the coming months, through streamlined business functions and the removal of duplication.

Chief Business Officer Simon Rabbitt will leave the organisation with Adam Foulsham appointed in the new role of Chief Operating Officer.

A highly respected financial and operational executive, Foulsham will absorb the finance, legal and information technology teams across Rugby Australia as well as the development and implementation of the strategic plan, under a new streamlined model.

A proud Australian, Foulsham has spent the last decade in New York and most recently served as Chief Financial Officer at marketing agency Wunderman Thompson after leading the merger between the Wunderman and J Walter Thompson group of companies.

Foulsham led all financial functions of the $1.3 billion dollar group and was responsible for savings of more than $125 million following a staff restructure before implementing new systems and improving processes.

Rugby Australia Interim Chief Executive Rob Clarke said: “Firstly, I want to thank Simon for his tireless service, especially over the past six months as he led our business through an incredibly challenging time and has dedicated much time and energy to our great game.

“Rugby Australia is transforming as an organisation as we prioritise our key strategic objectives, and we’ve been incredibly agile in our response to the COVID-19 health and financial crisis. “Adam’s appointment is a real coup for Rugby Australia and his experience will be crucial over the coming months.

“He is a very experienced senior executive and has led numerous transformational projects in prior roles so that nous has him well positioned to contribute to the future success of Rugby in this country.

“He has already begun consulting with various stakeholders within the game and will be driving operational efficiencies at every level of Rugby throughout Australia,” Clarke said.

Prior to serving as CFO at Wunderman Thompson, Foulsham recently served in senior executive roles in Melbourne and then in Sydney as CFO of Young & Rubicam Group before moving to New York in September 2011 as Global Executive Vice President of Young & Rubicam Group.

From there, Foulsham was promoted to CFO of Wunderman in New York where he managed all financial and commercial functions across 30 offices and 3,000 staff. At Wunderman, Foulsham managed all financial and commercial functions across 44 offices and US$850 million ($1.3 billion AUD) in revenue. He lead all client negotiations over US$5 million and increased profit margin by 150 basis points.

Foulsham will start at Rugby Australia on Monday 7 September.