25 THINGS YOU DIDNT KNOW
01. MBA Summer Internship at American Airlines (1993)
- Had the privilege to work at AA during my MBA summer break and help create their FIFA World Cup 1994 campaign.
- I guess my “humble” line to the CMO during the interview that “I know more about Football then his entire team” worked.
02. American Airlines CONCACAF GOLD CUP (1993)
- I represented American Airlines at the event in Mexico City (Azteka Stadium packed with 120k Mexican fans).
- Mexico beat the USA 4:0 and presenting the Man of The Match award afterwards.
- Sitting next to then FIFA President J. Havelange in the VIP Lounge was pretty cool.
03. Boris Becker story
- Was a ball boy at his first Professional Tournament in Cologne (Lucky Goldstar Cup, 1984).
- Worked at the event from the age of 12 till the age of 18, Ball-boy, Linesman, Event Coordinator.
- Never thought this would lead to a career in sports.
04. Reimbold & Strick
- Did a 2.5 year German Industry Kaufmann (Industrial Business clerk) degree in this company (1988-1990).
- Great training across sales, operations, accounting, finance, etc. Had some very supportive bosses who I will never forget.
05. FIFA World Cup 1994 (Dallas)
- That’s where it all began.
- Volunteered during my MBA with the local Organizing Committee which lead to my first real job in Sports marketing with ISL.
- Venue Manager at the FIFA World Cup in Dallas.
- MBA program 1992-1994.
- Still a Horned Frog fan till today.
07. Favourite Sports Movie – Jerry Maguire
- Must have watched this movie 20 times, especially in the early days of TSA
- Could relate to the struggle he had and love the lines “Show me the Money” and “Help me, Help you….”
- Still quoting them till today
08. My dog Nicki
- Grew up with a very cute Dachshund from the age of 6 until 18.
- As an only child , he was my buddy and best friend
09. Get Emotional watching Sports
- Get teary eyed watching the greatest sports moments from M Jordan, Boris Becker, M. Schumacher, etc
- Realized that at an early age and thought it was a bit strange. Now I know sports is my passion and was meant to be my path.
10. Asia Sports Group (World Sports Group)
- Came to Hong Kong in 1994 after the Wold Cup in the US, to work for Seamus O’Brien.
- In charge of the Asian Basketball Confederation’s commercial program.
- Ran events in Philippines, Korea, Japan and Malaysia over the first 18 months.
- Crash course in the real world of sports marketing, events, etc. Unbelievable experience, thanks Seamus.
11. Asian PGA Tour
- Moved to Kuala Lumpur end 1995 to help set up the Asian Professional Golf Association (APGA) with Ramlan Harun (under WSG).
- In charge of 12 golf events across South East Asia.
- The foundation of what today is called the Asian Tour.
12. Total Sports , starting in 1997
- Kick off into my Entrepreneurial career.
- Tough timing with Asian Financial Crisis hitting the region hard in 97/98.
- Survived somehow thru sheer hard work and dedication.
- Hit RM 1 million in Revenue in our first full year (1998).
- Since then generated US$ 500 million in revenue for rights holders globally.
13. Tennis was My Life
- From the age of 10 to 20, tennis was everything.
- Played competitively in club and leagues in Germany (never good enough to make a living but loved the sport).
14. Our first Clients
- Consulting Mastercard for the Commonwealth Games 1998 in Malaysia.
- Winston/Mild Seven, created a series of sponsored TV programs from German/French Football to Prince Naseem and our first WWE Deal.
15. WWE the beginning of TSA
- It all started with Winston sponsoring a short Series (13 episodes) in Malaysia and the program (WWE Superstars) becoming an overnight success.
- WWE (WWF at that time) recognized what we did in one market and we quickly managed to replicate a few others, 12 months later we became the agency of record for all of Asia.
- 7 years later and after generating over US$ 150 million in new revenue in Asia we worked ourselves out of a job.
16. My Favourite “The Rock” story
- Our first WWE Tour in 2002, the Rock had just done his first movie (Scorpion King) and came on Tour with us to promote the movie and off course Wrestle (Japan, Singapore, Malaysia).
- In the process of organizing the Tour, we had a misunderstanding with him.
- So when we finally met in Tokyo later, he only said “I have been looking for you” (and he gave me the eyebrow look).
- Long story short, we cleared the air and by the end of it, he loved the Tour and he rocked three fully sold out arenas in 4 days back to back. Unbelievable experience for everyone. Thank you Rock.
17. MBA – TCU
- Did my Masters in Business Administration in Fort Worth, Texas.
- Great school, great program, great memories.
- Still follow TCU Football till today – Go Frogs.
- Started Triathlons in my early 40s , clearly a form of Midlife crisis.
- Must have done over 25 Tri’s since then (mostly Olympic and Short Distance races) and love the feeling at the Finish line.
- Decent swimmer and biker but hopeless in the run. Still get into the top 10-20% of my age group.
19. My Kids
- My kids have lucky inherited my love and passion for sports.
- Everyone is an athlete in some form, representing their schools in Swimming, Athletics, Triathlons, Football, etc.
- One is even studying Sports marketing now in the UK.
- Let’s see where this goes …….
20. My Wife
- Besides being incredible lucky to being married to my beautiful and smart wife, she also makes sure I dress well.
- All credit to her for a complete change in my wardrobe and fashion sense.
21. My Parents
- My dad and mum recently retired after over 50 years owning and running a Jewellery business in Cologne.
- Grew up above the shop and saw the world of a small business from a young age.
- Never had the passion for it unfortunately, but loved watching my parents doing their thing.
22. YPO & EO
- Joined EO (Entrepreneurs Organization) around 2004 and YPO (Young Presidents’ Organization) in 2007.
- One of the smartest decisions in my life. Incredible friendships, learnings and growth thru these two organizations.
23. Tony Robbins
- Read his book in 1997 (Awakening the Giant Within) and clearly it did wake me up.
- Started TSA on the back of it six months later.
- Considering him my true mentor in almost all areas of my life.
- Became a Platinum partner in 2005-2006 and have been to all his events multiple times.
- Walked over burning hot coals 5x in my life (at Tony Robbins UPW events).
- Unbelievable experience, only burned myself once.
- Grew up with thick glasses and later contact lenses until my eyes rejected them from overusage.
- Did Lasik over 15 years ago and till today it is one of the most life changing decisions I have ever made.