New CEO and (maybe) new stadium for the Sharks
Edward Griffiths, former CEO of the SA Rugby Union (Saru) and boss of the English club Saracens, is not among the candidates to succeed John Smit at the Sharks.
The Sharks are planning on releasing the name of their new CEO before the end of the month after Smit’s recent resignation.
They will also make an announcement soon on whether the Moses Mabhida Stadium will indeed become the new headquarters of the union.
“Edward didn’t apply for the job,” Graham Mackenzie, president of the Sharks, told City Press’ sister publication, Rapport.
“We are still busy finalising the short list after the job was advertised. We are happy with the applications we’ve received. Talented people have applied.”
In an unexpected move, Smit released a media statement on May 26 in which he confirmed his resignation at the end of the 2016 season. He wants to spend more time with his family.
Griffiths was since seen as a strong contender to be his successor. He was often seen in the Shark Tank after Smit involved him as a consultant. His tasks included helping with player negotiations. Griffiths was also central to the Sharks’ discussions with the eThekwini municipality about their possible move to Moses Mabhida Stadium.
Rapport understands Griffiths has since returned to London.
“John will finish at the end of October, or when the Currie Cup series ends. We want his successor to work with him for at least a month or two,” said Mackenzie.
Smit became CEO in 2013 after controversially taking over from Brian van Zyl.
The names on the short list for the CEO job are not yet known.
Mackenzie has, however, confirmed that discussions with the eThekwini municipality about a possible move to Moses Mabhida are at an advanced stage.
“We are now basically waiting for the final documentation with all the details. A lot of things will influence our final decision.
“It will not be a purely commercial decision. We will take our clubs, sponsors, box holders, supporters and even transformation plans into consideration. “Also, Kings Park has a rich history.” SuperSport, the largest shareholder in the Sharks union, has given its support for the new home ground as long as it’s in everyone’s best interests. SuperSport owns 40% and the Sharks 60% of Sharks Pty (Ltd).
The endless financial challenges of maintaining Kings Park are seen as the main reason for a move to Moses Mabhida.
Kings Park has been in use since 1958. However, the last time significant improvements were done was 21 years ago, prior to the 1995 World Cup.
BIG SHOES The Sharks are looking for a replacement for John Smit as their CEO