As part of the general assembly, the new board of trustees, the athletic and economic advisory board of the association, consisting of 53 members, was re-elected for seven years (here you will find a list of all members of the board of trustees). The proposed list was adopted of the members by a large majority. The inaugural meeting will take place in March under the direction of the previous Chairman Dr. Michael Häupl.
In addition, the regular members of FK Austria Wien were informed about the athletic and economic development (including the financial statements for the 2018/19 season) and about the club's future plans. The committee and the Board of Directors were unanimously disburdened for the accounting year 2018/19.
President Frank Hensel on ...
… the economic situation: ‘It is no secret that Austria Wien is in a difficult situation in terms of sport and economy. We therefore have to generate new income and develop new ideas. We are proud of our new stadium, but it has also pushed us to the limit of our financial resources.’
... the current athletic development: ‘In the past few months we have consistently focused on our young players and will continue on this path.’
... the search for a strategic investor: ‘We are looking for a strategic investor who must also help us in the athletic area. Given the expected future conditions in European football, we assume that we need a strategic investor in order to be able to regularly succeed in European football in the long run.’
After one and a half seasons in the new Generali-Arena, CEO Markus Kraetschmer also drew an interim conclusion on the operational business in the new stadium. A comparison of the numbers of last season in the old Generali-Arena (2015/16) with those of the first season in the new stadium (2018/19) shows that the revenues in the areas of ticketing, VIP, advertising, merchandising, events on matchdays and events on non-matchdays could be increased significantly.
The contribution margin of operating business increased from EUR 992 thousand (2015/16) to EUR 4 million 192 thousand (2018/19). The contribution margin thus forms the basis for the repayment and interest, which amounted to EUR 2 million 155 thousand during the 2018/19 season. Sales in the consolidated financial statements in the previous season amounted to EUR 38 million 763 thousand, the annual result was a surplus of EUR 2 million 286 thousand.
Kraetschmer also presented to the members, among other things, the large digitization project that could be implemented in cooperation with Bayern München IT, as well as current focal points in the areas of marketing, communication, ticketing, merchandising & sustainability, where Austria Wien has played a pioneering role for many years. The internationalization of the sponsorship landscape is also being pushed ahead.
In terms of infrastructure, Austria Wien is working intensively on the development of the youth centrum and the expansion of the academy together with the city of Vienna. ‘We are in a very intensive exchange with the City of Vienna and the Vienna Football Association and expect to take some important steps in terms of permits and financing this year,’ explains Markus Kraetschmer.
Sports Director Peter Stöger explained his ideas about the future team structure of the A-team: ‘The goal is to have some leading players who form the corset and to have many young players who have a lot of potential and want to take further steps in their careers. We will also use our network and enter into cooperation with large associations - it is now a matter of building trust.’
As in the past, the Austria Wien Academy will play a central role: ‘If players perform, they will have a chance to establish themselves in the A-team. Every year we see that we have rookies who are worth our support and have the potential to play in the Bundesliga - we have to encourage and challenge these players.’
We were able to congratulate some members at the general assembly on special anniversaries and at the same time thank them for their exceptional support: Michael Döller, Manfred Heinrich Mautner Markhof, Rudolf Starzer (10 Years each), Peter Kozel (20 years), Johann Pöcho (40 years) and Peter Kales (50 years). In an interview, our “Young Violets” coach Harald Suchard gave interesting insights into the interaction between the academy, the “Young Violets” and the A-team.
After the General Assembly, people exchanged information about the past, present and the future of Austria Wien with a cosy atmosphere.