Ivan Gazidis’ appointment proves AC Milan mean business
AC Milan chairman Paolo Scorani, “Ivan Gazidis will bring an unparallel level of business acumen and football industry experience to the club. He helped established professional football in the US; he brought Arsenal to new heights; and we can’t wait for him to get started here in Milan. The fundamentals are now in place of success, which we recognize will take time, hard work, and preservance.”
Arsenal’s outgoing CEO Ivan Gazidis joined AC Milan today. The veteran joining Rossoneri club proves that they mean business. Gazidis will officially resume business on December 1, but club official website writes on his unveiling today, “AC Milan hires world class CEO”. It’s clear indication that the new club owner Elliot Management mean business at one of the historic Italian club.
Milan suffered a lot financial under Silvio Berlusconi, and then the ownership was transferred to Chinese owner Li Yonghon. Li Yonghon took the loan of €300 million from US Hedge Fund Company Elliot Management to acquire the club, but club never felt in secure hands under him. They didn’t bring reinforcement at the club and also failed to pay the loan interest to Elliot Management.
Elliot Management took over the ownership of AC Milan as Li Yonghon defaulted on its debt obligations this year in April, and since then they have done a major restructuring. They have stayed true to their words of helping the club financially and providing assist in making AC Milan great.
At the time of acquisition, Elliot Management announced, “Having assumed control, Elliot’s vision for AC Milan is straightforward: to create financial stability and establish sound management; to achieve long term success for AC Milan by focusing on the fundamentals and ensuring that the club is well-capitalized; and to run a sustainable operation model that respects UEFA Financial Fair Play obligations.”
Standing true to their words, first Elliot Management injected €50 million into the club to run the day to day operations. They didn’t spend big on their summer acquisitions but they hired the player on loan reducing their transfer spending.
Rossoneri club also restructured business personnel at the club. They hired a new Chairman in Paolo Scorani on July 21, 2018 and dismissed all four Chinese board members along with previous CEO Marco Fassone.
And here come, the veteran outgoing CEO of Arsenal – Ivan Gazidis. Ivan comes with many successes under his belt with his previous stints. He played a major role in founding Major League Soccer in the United States, and then goes on to manage at that time England’s top club Arsenal.
Arsenal didn’t win any Premier League trophy during his reign as business head but they were growing as a club off the field. Their business were growing as they won three FA Cups and appeared eight successive time in UEFA Champions League finishing in top four of Premier League.
He made Arsenal a profitable club and helped them become a publicly traded company. Today Arsenal have a turnover of excess of €400 million and they have 600 employees working for them. He helped English club on a happy note as Gunners are also going for a major restructuring. After Gazidis resignation, Arsenal announced to names on board. Raul Sanllehi become their new head of football and Vinai Venkatesham is given the role of managing director as Arsenal confirmed on their twitter account.
Raul Sanllehi and Vinai Venkatesham appointed head of football and managing director respectively, as Ivan Gazidis leaves for A.C. Milan
— Arsenal FC (@Arsenal) September 18, 2018
On the other hand, AC Milan chairman Paolo Scaroni praised his new CEO Ivan Gazidis. He said, “On behalf of the board and the entire Milan community, we proudly welcome Ivan Gazidis to the club. The CEO role is one we have prioritized from day one of this project and one we have worked diligently upon to get right. Ivan Gazidis will bring an unparallel level of business acumen and football industry experience to the club. He helped established professional football in the US; he brought Arsenal to new heights; and we can’t wait for him to get started here in Milan. The fundamentals are now in place of success, which we recognize will take time, hard work, and preservance.”
Of course, it will take time but they are on right path. AC Milan former star player Kaka said when club was on course to face an European ban, “The European ban? I hope it doesn’t happen. I hope Milan can play in the Europa League, a right they won on the pitch, and then slowly get back to where they once were. It takes time but it will happen. We can’t despair, we can build something important. I feel that we can start again, and I think Milan can do it soon. To the fans I’d say, “be patient, another story will start soon.”
It’s not only the restructuring at board level which have been impressive. AC Milan have done a great job in latest transfer market. They brought in stars like Mattia Caldara, Samu Castillejo, Nikola Kalinic, Diego Laxalt, and Fabio Borini on permanent deal and acquired two of the big names Gonzalo Higuain and Tiemoue Bakayoko on loan deal. They got a veteran goalkeeper in Pepe Reina, attacking midfielder in Alen Halilovic, and left-back in Ivan Strinic free in transfer market as well.
Overall, they have a very good squad and are capable of at least winning Europa League. Ivan Gazidis will be happy to resume his services for AC Milan in December. A historic club is going to write another story and Ivan Gazidis appointment proves they mean business.