Exclusive: Coe can build on the foundations I put down at the BOA says Moynihan
Tuesday, 06 November 2012
November 6 - Colin Moynihan, the outgoing British Olympic Association (BOA) chairman, has backed his successor Sebastian Coe to build on his foundations at the organisation.
Moynihan will step down as BOA chairman tomorrow after seven years with Coe set to replace him as the sole candidate for the role.
Coe will take up the prestigious position having received widespread plaudits for his work as London 2012 chairman and Moynihan believes he will continue to excel at the new head of the BOA.
"Seb will do an outstanding job," Moynihan exclusively told insidethegames here at the BOA headquarters.
"The fact that he is keen to do it is an endorsement of the position the BOA now holds in British sport.
"Seb can add value in a wide range of areas because he has a very high national and international reputation as an outstanding leader in sports administration.
"The reputation he has rightly gained from a great Games this summer will benefit the BOA.
"He will add particular value through the many sponsorship deals which we are already negotiating.
"I think we are right to hold back on announcing those so that Seb can be the driving force behind them.
"They are, after all, sponsorship deals for the next four to eight years and they are coming along well.
"I also think the three key objectives which I have sought to deliver in my time - namely being athlete-centred, performance driven and professionally managed - are all criteria that Seb strongly believes in and will wish to take forward.
"So on all those fronts, I think he will be a strong chair with my complete support at all times."
Moynihan, who succeeded Sir Craig Reedie as chairman in 2005 before being re-elected in 2009, continued that he retains a strong personal relationship with Coe despite the high profile dispute between the BOA and London 2012 last year which revolved around the Joint Marketing Agreement for the Games and the funding of the Paralympics.
Moynihan had called for more money earmarked for the Paralympics to be given to the BOA before the dispute was eventually resolved in April last year.
"That particular issue didn't affect our personal relationship at all," the former Conservative Sports Minister said.
"I have known Seb since before we went to the [Moscow] Games in 1980 together and he has been a good friend and colleague over the last 30 plus years.
"That has always been the case.
"Hosting a home Games was always going to lead to some differences of interpretation but nothing that impacted on our personal relationship in anyway."
Despite helping steer Team GB to third place at the London 2012 Olympics with 65 medals, 29 of them gold, Moynihan has been criticised for spending too much and leaving the BOA in debt following the Games.
But Moynihan said success at London 2012 was vital and revealed he has often been in a difficult position as BOA chairman due to the financial constraints he inherited.
"I came in at a time when there were huge financial constraints on the BOA," he said.
"The BOA was operating at a loss and the Joint Marketing Agreement that was signed was meant to fund the next two Games [Beijing in 2008 and London in 2012] and then through to the end of 2013.
"But in practice, it could only fund £33 million ($53 million/€42 million), over eight years, out of a budget that we needed to raise of £88 million ($176 million/€110 million).
"It is to the great credit of the management team that we raised that £88 million ($176 million/€110 million) through a whole range of initiatives despite having presold all our rights and working within the most constrained contractual environment our history.
"You need gold medal management and gold medal support for a gold medal athlete and that is why we needed to raise £88 million ($176 million/€110 million).
"I recognised when I took on the job and saw the financial position, the restraints of the Joint Marketing Agreement and the need for change, that this was going to be very much a hands-on job.
"This was effectively an executive chair role and I was willing to give seven years of my life to do that without being paid a salary.
"I haven't regretted a day since I made that decision.
"I had always told my family and close friends that I would be returning to the business world so that was always planned well in advance of the Games.
"The right time to do that was as soon after the Games as possible so that the new chair could work on building a strategy to support the athletes in Sochi in 2014 and beyond.
"So the timing was pre-organised and right.
"I also believe that after seven years, there should be change because you need to refresh an organisation.
"I will still be very active in the world of sport, I will be campaigning for a sports legacy at home,
"I will continue to sit on the International Olympic Committee's (IOC) International Relations Commission as long as they want me to and I am on the European Olympic Committee Executive Board.
"So I will keep in touch.
"My challenge was to see how we could move forward to Beijing and London.
"Seb now has the challenge to build on London and to deliver in Rio and beyond."
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