The WPBSA and World Snooker
The WPBSA is a 26% stakeholder in World Snooker , which allows the WPBSA to generate income which can then be re-invested back into the WPBSA to drive the sport’s development.
WPBSA Chairman Jason Ferguson forms part of the board of World Snooker, a role that enables him to manage the WPBSA’s investment in that company and to ensure the interests of the players and the sport are maintained. It also provides the opportunity for the WPBSA to work with governments, sports ministries and cities around the world which ultimately can lead to the growth of the World Snooker Tour.
How do they differ?
The WPBSA is snooker’s world governing body, responsible for the governance and development of the sport globally. The organisation is not for profit, with revenue to be allocated for re-investment to drive the sport forward. It is managed in accordance with its constitution.
World Snooker Ltd is a commercial events company, it holds the exclusive right granted from the WPBSA to own and operate the World Snooker Tour. It has the freedom to drive profit from its activities which allows it enter into contracts with commercial partners, sell sponsorship and maximise the value of the sports television rights.
Matchroom Sport Ltd, a company owned by Barry Hearn owns 51% of World Snooker Ltd.
How does the WPBSA work with World Snooker?
The WPBSA is at the forefront of snooker’s globalisation and so many new sports development opportunities come through it, including the introduction of new markets that World Snooker can then capitalise on with the generation of new events.
In its role as the sport’s governing body, the WPBSA has overseen the creation of the Players Forum. Any issues raised by the players in respect of the World Snooker Tour should be levied through its Players Forum and its player representatives.
Referees on the World Snooker Tour are employed by World Snooker, but work under rules and guidelines laid down by the WPBSA, including the official rules.
The WPBSA retains responsibility for the World Snooker ranking list and continues to be responsible for coaching and development, the equality and diversity of the sport and all grassroots initiatives.
Why is this separation important?
The separation of Governance and Commercial activities is vital to manage the sport professionally. It allows the commercial activities to move freely and efficiently and allows the governing body to concentrate on its development initiatives without the concerns of running a tour of events. It also gives protection to sponsors and partners against any potential political issues which can appear in sports bodies from time to time.
The WPBSA and World Snooker Ltd are tied together through shareholding and contract and therefore work together in their prospective roles for the sport as a whole.