WFSGI ANNOUNCES LEADERSHIP CHANGES
Ittigen (Bern), SWITZERLAND – 03 August 2023
After a successful 16-year tenure, Robbert De Kock, President and Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the World Federation of Sporting Goods Industry (WFSGI), has decided that he has accomplished his mission and it is time for him to leave the organisation and hand over the baton to a new leader. The WFSGI Board has appointed Emma (Mason) Zwiebler as Interim CEO from 1 November 2023.
De Kock, who joined the WFSGI in 2007, has been instrumental in the growth of the organisation; significantly growing both membership and revenue streams and aligning the global sporting goods industry with the world’s leading organisations in sports and health.
During his tenure, De Kock successfully led the WFSGI team in the delivery of a wide range of transformative work including the WFSGI Pledge for the FIFA quality programme and the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU), with the World Health Organization (WHO), to improve global health through increased physical activity and sports participation.
In 2016 De Kock was instrumental in the establishment of the International Olympic Committee (IOC) uniform support programme and the recent signing of a supplier agreement with the IOC.
On his decision to leave the WFSGI De Kock says “Over the past few years, I’ve dedicated myself to assembling a strong team capable of seamlessly assuming my position. The organisation is thriving and, with the new WFSGI strategic plan and the signing of the new IOC supplier agreement marking a career-high, it’s the perfect moment for me to embrace the next phase of my life.”
“I’m confident that our paths will cross again in the future, but I wish to thank the WFSGI Board for the opportunities to continuously develop the organisation, the members for their trust and my team for their loyal support and knowledge.”
WFSGI Chair, Andy Rubin, says: “Robbert’s dedication and commitment to the WSFGI mission have been instrumental in positioning the WFSGI as the world’s leading sporting goods industry body. The WFSGI now represents the industry at the highest levels of government, sport and health and we would like to thank Robbert for his contribution over many years and we wish him all the best for the future.”
Rubin continues: “As we bid farewell to Robbert, we are delighted to embark on the next chapter of our journey with Emma appointed as Interim CEO. With her expertise and passion, Emma is well-placed to lead our well-qualified and experienced team. Together they will guide the WFSGI through our next phase of growth and our mission to reduce our impact on the planet, inspire more people to live active lifestyles and promote free and fair trade.”
Emma (Mason) Zwiebler joined the WFSGI five years ago and has been Vice President for Strategic and External Affairs since 2019. Zwiebler is also a Trustee of the charity Switch the Play Foundation. A former international badminton player, Zwiebler previously worked as a sports lawyer at Squire Patton Boggs and held various roles in sports organisations including British Showjumping, British Triathlon, Runmates, and Chelsea Football Club.
Over the coming months, De Kock will work closely with Zwiebler to ensure a smooth leadership transition and he will continue to advise and support the WFSGI Board and Leadership team until June 2024.