Off The Pitch launches "Inside the Executive Box" podcast

13 July 2021

Genk
Photo: Richard Van Yperen Peter Croonen (Left), chairman at Belgium top-side KRC Genk, explains in the first episode of the new Off The Pitch podcast, "Inside the Executive Box", why the special ownership of the club turned out to be an advantage during the Covid-10 lockdown. On the right the host of the podcast, Alexander Janssen.

Off The Pitch has just launched our first podcast, "Inside the Executive Box."

The first edition of the podcast, hosted by Alexander Janssen, is an interview with Peter Croonen, the chairman of KRC Genk, who are known for having one of the leading academies in Europe.

Peter Croonen explains why their ownership structure, which could be looked at as a risk-factor in a crisis environment, actually turned out to be an advantage during the Covid-19 lockdown.

The chairman also underlines that stability in the board is very important due to the very complex nature of the football industry.

Kasper Kronenberg kk@offthepitch.com

Peter Croonen, chairman at Belgium top-side KRC Genk, explains in the first episode of the new Off The Pitch podcast, "Inside the Executive Box", why the special ownership of the club turned out to be an advantage during the Covid-10 lockdown.

KRC Genk are owned by a non-profit organisation, which is a clear limitation in terms of getting access to capital, but at the same time that specific ownership model is forcing the club to always make sure they have the necessary funding in place to back up all sorts of investments.

"There is one big downside though [with the ownership model], and that is [the lack of] access to finance. And we have to reflect on that. If we are going to do all this infrastructure work that we have planned, we need funds, in a way where we can combine it with sporting stability and the long-term ambitions of the club. So, access to finance is a downside.

"Therefore, we need to create our reserves on the inside of the club – in our balance sheet. Our reserves are not in the pockets of a rich owner. It has to be in the pockets of the club itself. And that was a big benefit during the corona-lockdown. So the downside proved to be a upside in a crisis situation like we have just been through," explains Croonen.

Peter Croonen is also happy to see that the ownership model has proven strong in terms of making sure that there is continuity at board level.

"In our club we have 56 members who come together twice a year, who mainly get information, but the only real task for the members is to appoint and to dismiss the members of the board. And we have a very good stability in the last ten years in terms of stability in the board. Most members of the board today has a history in the board of more than 10 years. And football is a very complex environment [so we need that continuity]," says Croonen.

The podcast is free - and you can find the podcast on your preferred podcast platform:

Apple Podcasts

Spotify

BuzzSprout

We hope you like it - and we look forward to producing many more in the future.