Umar Kremlev and the Board of Directors mark two years at the helm of the IBA. IBA

On 14 May 2022, the organisation's President was re-elected for a second consecutive four-year term. During this period, the IBA has promoted new competition formats. One of these is the Champions' Night, a professional event. His priorities have been stability, financial security, expansion and athlete support.

Two years have passed since Umar Kremlev was re-elected President of the International Boxing Association (IBA). He is now serving his second consecutive term. The election of the current Board of Directors, the first new composition of the body following the entry into force of the constitutional amendments, also took place on 14 May 2022.

Over the past two years, the Board's focus has been on the strengthening of the organisation's financial, sporting and governance integrity. Board members underwent a selection process and Prodivus was elected as the first Vice President. Subsequently, two Vice Presidents were appointed, Abdulmutalim Abakarov from Serbia and Mr Ajay Singh from India.

President Kremlev said, "The National Federations made the right choice in entrusting you as a collective Board with the responsibility of leading the International Boxing Association and the results of your tireless efforts are a testament to your dedication and vision."

An image of the Congress held in Dubai last December 2023. IBA
An image of the Congress held in Dubai last December 2023. IBA

Some of the IBA's efforts have materialised in the creation of new competition formats, including the flagship professional event, the IBA Champions' Night. This has become a bridge between amateur and professional boxing. This event, which travels from city to city, is designed to give boxers the opportunity to feel rewarded for their efforts.

The Champions' Night was attended by 49 nations. Several championship belts were fought for. Further events in this format are planned for 2024. The most recent event took place in Madrid, Spain.

An extensive calendar for the next four years was recently unveiled. It includes a prize fund of more than $80 million (€74 million). Of particular note are the IBA Men's World Boxing Championships, held every two years, and the corresponding Women's World Championships. The next IBA Women's World Boxing Championships will be held in Astana, Kazakhstan, from 21 September to 6 October 2024. The next Men's World Championships are scheduled for April 2025.

The Champions' Night events are an opportunity for the boxers. IBA
The Champions' Night events are an opportunity for the boxers. IBA

Securing the financial conditions to host these events in the coming years, including prize money for the boxers, has also been a top priority for the IBA. Expansion to different continents was another reason for action in these two years. This has involved organising a series of Competitions and implementing the Financial Support Programme. 

Member countries were supported and those hosting competitions were able to promote young talent and discover potential new athletes for the future. Another objective of the IBA was to create free development courses to increase the pool of competition officials and coaches. 

This desire for training and professionalisation is reflected in the Sports Management course organised by IBA and ISDE. This course prepares staff in boxing federations around the world. The attempt to expand and integrate newly established national federations has also been a priority during these two years.

The desire is to secure resources to deliver more and more quality events. IBA
The desire is to secure resources to deliver more and more quality events. IBA

"On this day, I would like to thank our Board of Directors for their fruitful work over the past two years," said President Kremlev. "We've achieved a lot so far with a good group of consummate professionals driven by a passion for boxing. However, there is much more we can do for the boxing family. We want our sport to be number one in the world and we will spare no effort to ensure that it is the leading organisation. I reiterate: Our athletes, our coaches and our national federations are our top priority and we will continue to support them no matter what."

Addressing the Board, he continued, "Today, the world of sport is going through a period of turbulence and is often held hostage to the various ambitions of sports officials at the highest level. For the sake of personal and sometimes dishonest ambitions, the interests of athletes and coaches are being trampled underfoot."

He said, "I am convinced that the politicisation of sport, the imbalance of governing bodies and the attempts to sow discord and intolerance among each other can only be countered by joining forces and combining our efforts. You can count on my personal support and willingness to defend the interests of boxing."

IBA Secretary General and CEO Chris Roberts OBE said: "We have a busy programme ahead of us and I'm confident that each year we will see a stronger and more powerful IBA, which is what is needed to ensure the future of our athletes is the brightest.

The IBA Board is made up of 18 individuals:

President Umar Kremlev, as well as the Presidents of the Continental Confederations, Eyassu Wossen Berhanu representing AFBC, Jose Laureano of AMBC, Pichai Chunhavajira of ASBC, Dr. Ioannis Filippatos of EUBC and Tauhiti Nena of OCBC, the Chairperson of the Athletes' Committee, Mrs. Lovlina Borgohain, and a further representative to be elected from among the members. 

As well as 10 Independent Directors elected by the voting delegates at the Congress: Abdeljaouad Belhaj from Morocco, Yousuf Al-Kazim from Qatar, Lourdes Avendaño Rodríguez from Bolivia, Marta Forcen Celaya from Spain, Pearl Dlamini from Eswatini, Dian Gomes from Sri Lanka, Kristy Harris from Australia, Volodymyr Prodyvus from Ukraine, Zsuzsanna Toth from Hungary and Jinqiang Zhou from China.