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SportsHub on the hunt for new CEO

SINGAPORE — SportsHub Pte Ltd (SHPL) has started a global search for a new chief executive officer, but the company says the process is part of its succession planning and is “not a new or recent decision”.

Mr Collin-Delavaud helped oversee the construction of the S$1.33 billion Sports Hub. TODAY File Photo

Mr Collin-Delavaud helped oversee the construction of the S$1.33 billion Sports Hub. TODAY File Photo

SINGAPORE — SportsHub Pte Ltd (SHPL) has started a global search for a new chief executive officer, but the company says the process is part of its succession planning and is “not a new or recent decision”.

SHPL chairman Mark Woodhams said this yesterday in response to TODAY’s queries about the hunt for a replacement for Mr Philippe Collin-Delavaud, who was appointed to the position in March 2011. He said Mr Collin-Delavaud would remain in his post “until well after the Southeast Asian (SEA) Games”.

The Games will be held in Singapore from June 5 to 16.

He said: “From the outset, it was envisaged that Philippe Collin-Delavaud would lead the company through the construction phase and into stable operations, but would not remain as the CEO for the long term.

“These have always been the terms of Philippe’s appointment. As part of an orderly succession plan, SHPL has therefore begun the search for a new CEO to lead the operations of SHPL now that we have entered the operating phase.”

Mr Woodhams said a search firm had been hired by SHPL to undertake the hunt for a new chief executive and that an announcement would be made in due course, but did not reveal further details.

Mr Collin-Delavaud was not available for comment yesterday, but Mr Woodhams said the Frenchman had been “very supportive” of the move.

“It was agreed with Philippe at the time of his appointment, consistent with his wishes and long-term career planning,” he said. “Philippe has been consulted about the search and is very supportive.”

Mr Collin-Delavaud, 60, previously worked at leading stadium operators including the Consortium Stade de France, which runs the 80,000-seat Stade de France that staged the 1998 World Cup football final.

Under his tenure as SHPL chief, the Frenchman helped oversee the construction of the S$1.33 billion Sports Hub, which began operations around the middle of last year.

However, the National Stadium’s former Desso GrassMaster hybrid pitch was criticised after it struggled to withstand a hectic schedule of sporting and non-sporting events. This also led to public criticism of SHPL’s former senior director of stadia Greg Gillin, who has resigned.

The DessoGrass Master pitch has since been replaced by a new Lay-and-Play natural turf called Eclipse Stabilised Turf (EST) in a three-year deal between SHPL and HG Sports Turf, a Melbourne-based firm that specialises in the construction of premium sports fields.

Mr Collin-Delavaud described the new turf as a permanent solution to the issues of the National Stadium’s pitch.

Mr Woodhams reiterated that the search for a new CEO would not affect the Sports Hub’s staging of events at the SEA Games, when the majority of sports competitions will take place.

He said: “It is business as usual and Philippe and the team are fully committed to delivering successful world-class sporting and entertainment events, such as the SEA Games.” TAN YO-HINN

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