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Wheels of change turn at Cycling Australia

Wheels of change turn at Cycling Australia
September 18, 2014

Financially-troubled Cycling Australia has announced a $2 million recapitalisation loan, including $1.5 million from the Australian Sports Commission (ASC).

Having undertaken a range of governance reforms earlier this year, bringing it into line with the ASC’s mandatory sports governance principles, the loan will enable Cycling Australia to complete the restructuring of its governance and commercial operations.

Commenting on the funding, ASC Chairman John Wylie said the interest-bearing loan, to be repaid in five to seven years, would feature strict conditions.

Wylie stated "the ASC determined that the most effective way of protecting the sport's strongest assets, its high-performance athletes and mass public appeal, was to grant the existing organisation a loan on the condition it continues its reform agenda.

"The (conditions include) the co-contribution by the sports member states, complete governance overhaul, and ongoing financial oversight of the high-performance program by the AIS."

The other $500,000 of Cycling Australia's loan will come from its member states and Mountain Bike Australia.

Commenting on Cycling Australia's financial state over the past year, outgoing President Gerry Ryan said on Tuesday "if it was a private business, it would no longer be operating."

Ryan took over as President late last year with former AFL senior executive Adrian Anderson became interim Chief Executive.

Anderson left in May after overseeing major reforms to how the body is run.

Now a nominations committee, Chaired by CA patron Peter Bartels, has recommended a board from about 100 applicants.

Commenting on Cycling Australia’s performance this year, Wylie added “under Gerry Ryan's leadership, impressive governance reform has already been achieved and today's full board announcement provides further evidence of the sport's willingness to change.”

The changes at Cycling Australia would appear to represent another success for the ASC and Wylie in improving the governance and leadership of Australian sport.

The changes in cycling follow sweeping changes at Swimming Australia and in both cases a new president, board and chief executive have eventuated from the ASC review.

Industry insiders suggest that the independent ASC review now underway into Athletics Australia following its poor performance at the Glasgow Commonwealth Games may result in similar outcomes.


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