EDINBURGH RUGBY’s new home bound on the back pitches at Murrayfield will be called ‘The DAM Health Stadium’ for the next-five years as part of a seven-figure agreement announced this afternoon.
DAM Health, incorporated 6th December 2020, is one of the UK’s leading providers of Covid-19 testing with 45 clinics, and has big plans to expand the business into a broad range of health-care solutions, including medical supplies and a wider range of diagnostic services. The partnership will see one of the businesses’ test laboratories installed on the BT Murrayfield campus, with all testing for the club and Scottish Rugby teams conducted on their doorstep by DAM Health.
The laboratory will also aim to offer a suite of private tests to the public – including Fit to Fly RT-PCR, Lateral Flow Antigen and Test to Release – from the central site in the capital, with discounted services promised for Season Ticket Members, Business Club Members, and wider partners.
“This is a really important announcement,” said Edinburgh Managing Director Doug Struth. “For the second time in a relatively short period of time we are here able to unveil another new major, long-term, seven-figure commercial partner to support the club, and what is really pleasing for me is that it is for the new stadium which hasn’t had a domestic game yet, so to be able to announce this so early in the process is really, really massive from a club perspective.
“This is something that will hit the bottom line of Edinburgh Rugby from a positive income perspective and that’s something which will continue over the next five years as the partnership evolves. So, from a fans perspective, this is genuinely something which will make a difference and allow us to be far more sustainable as a club, and to invest in and around the club going forward.”
Struth added that ticket-sales for Edinburgh’s first league game of the season against Scarlets on Saturday night passed the 5,000 mark on Wednesday. “I’m pleased with that but it’s clearly not 7,774 so we’ve got some work to do, and I’d just appeal to our fans who have not bought their tickets already to please do so, because it is filling up fast and it would just be really, really special to see over 7,000 Edinburgh fans in that stadium,” he added.
Meanwhile, DAM Health’s Medical Director, Professor Frank Joseph, explained that the business had come into being as a direct consequence of the Covid crisis and outlined the ambition to grow beyond its current core function of Covid testing.
“DAM Group as an entity has a wider working model covering areas such as corporate matters, construction and real estate,” he explained. “The way that DAM Health came about was that when the pandemic hit a lot of the DAM Group’s commercial enterprises started to take a hit and we had to come up with a solution as to how w take control of the Covid situation ourselves. So, we thought that if we can’t rely on anybody else to do it, then let’s do it ourselves.”
“That was the initial impetus, so we started off with PPE supply then moved into Covid testing for events and it developed from there.”
He added: “Having built that infrastructure [of testing labs in Liverpool, Fulham, Kent and now in Edinburgh] our vision is much greater than Covid, and being associated with sport is a great vehicle for us, so when this opportunity with Edinburgh and Scottish Rugby came up, we said that this is partnership which is going to strengthen how we develop.”
“We at DAM Health are all thrilled to announce our partnership with Edinburgh Rugby as they begin their next chapter at this fantastic new stadium.
“We will be using our range of test methods for the teams and their staff and will also be offering our services to the club’s supporters. We cannot wait to see thousands of fans in the fabulous DAM Health Stadium full of noise, energy and colour.
“As we continue to grow and diversify as a healthcare company this is a fantastic moment to align our long-term plans with Edinburgh Rugby.”
Scottish Rugby Chief Medical Officer, Dr James Robson MBE, added: “This is fantastic news for the club and stadium but also a hugely exciting partnership from a medical perspective, providing an extremely important service for Edinburgh and all Scottish Rugby teams.
“PCR Coronavirus testing remains a priority need in the current climate, to enable us to continue with our sport, so it’s fantastic we have a long-standing partner secured in that regard, while the capacity to develop near-patient testing through the on-site laboratory in the future is magnificent.”