July 20, 2024

Koch announces Richardson as Port Adelaide’s new CEO

Port Adelaide chairman David Koch has revealed Matthew Richardson as the club’s new CEO.

Port Adelaide’s new Chief Executive Officer is Matthew Richardson.

Mr Richardson’s appointment was announced by Chairman David Koch at the club’s annual Best and Fairest Awards event at the Adelaide Convention Centre tonight.

He will replace outgoing CEO Keith Thomas who finishes up this week after more than nine years at the helm.

Mr Richardson has been at the club since 2001 starting as Marketing Manager of the Magpies in the SANFL and then progressing to CEO when they were deemed a separate entity to the Power.

In 2008, Mr Richardson joined the Power as General Manager of Marketing and Consumer Business and was promoted in 2018 to Executive General Manager.

Mr Koch admitted he had wanted an external person to take on the role, but Mr Richardson was the most compelling candidate.

“This is arguably the most important appointment of any club. It’s one never to be taken likely. It is a huge responsibility,” the Chairman said.

“I must admit I initially wanted someone from outside the club to fill the role. Richo knows this.

“But no candidate we spoke to ever seemed to have the all-round package that Richo brings. I was always sub-consciously benchmarking them against him.

“I didn’t ever want to be accused of making the easy decision so we got Andrew Demetriou’s sports executive recruitment firm to scour the market and put Richo through the wringer.

“The end result was Andrew concluded we had the best person right here already.”

Mr Koch praised Mr Thomas for leaving such a well-rounded successor, saying it was the mark of a good leader.

And he outlined some of Mr Thomas’s achievements since his appointment in August 2011 including appointing Ken Hinkley as coach and Travis Boak as captain, overseeing the One Club strategy to reunite the SANFL and AFL arms of the club, and launching both the competition’s first Aboriginal AFL Academy and Women’s Aboriginal AFL Academy.

Mr Koch said Mr Thomas had also guided the club to the redeveloped Adelaide Oval, helped it surpass 60,000 members for the first time, taken the club to China to play for premiership points, a feat no other western sporting club in the world had achieved, and brought in key partners like GFG and MG.

Mr Koch said he had also seen the club through its 150th Anniversary year, made more challenging by the global pandemic.

“It’s been a massive agenda which he achieved in typical KT style; hard work, strong leadership and an empathy and warmth for all those involved,” Mr Koch said.

“They often say the true measure of a chief executive is always in the quality of the successor he leaves to continue his legacy. And in this regard KT has excelled again.”

Mr Richardson takes on the new role as of Monday 2 November.

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