Alumni Sports Industry Group connects with industry leaders

With sport a multi-billion-dollar business in Australia, knowing what makes a sport product great is a much-discussed topic, especially among members of the new Melbourne Business School’s Sports Industry Group, which probed the issue last month with a panel of industry movers and shakers.
Alumni Sports Industry Group connects with industry leadersThe panellists included former Melbourne Victory chairman and Hawthorn Football Club president Geoff Lord, who is also an MBS board member and chairman of the Belgravia Group Chairman, one of Australia’s largest golf course and fitness centre operators.

Geoff was joined by Josh Vanderloo and Madeline Penny, leading members of the strategy team that implemented the first successful AFL Women’s League season this year, and Scott Watkins, chairman of Parkrun Australia, organiser of the popular weekly 5km community runs that have swept the country. 

The panellists explained to a full-house of MBS alumni and friends the strategies that have made their products successful and they’re plans for future growth.

Josh and Madeline said the AFL Women’s competition is set for a second season this summer, but their team is already planning how the competition might look in 2019 and beyond, especially with clubs applying to establish more teams.

Scott said his hugely successful not-for-profit Parkrun Australia organisation, which attracts more than 400,000 participants to over 220 community-based, 5km runs and walks around Australia every Saturday, is looking to introduce shorter 2km runs for juniors.

And Geoff explained how the Belgravia Group is continuing to push boundaries by exploring a possible expansion into eSports, popular among video gamers, and creating a league association. 

Alumni Francis Soyer (MBA 2015) and Aaron Yeak (MBA 2016) founded the MBS Sports Industry Group earlier this year to bring together MBS alumni who work or are interested in the sports, recreation and fitness industry.

They’re planning more events to provide thought leadership, networking opportunities and knowledge sharing with key industry leaders. Keep an eye out for details of the next event or join the group by registering on MyMBS.