Former Champions League marketing executive Simon Thomas will replace Philippe Le Floc’h as FIFA’s Chief Commercial Officer.
The world governing body for football has announced Thomas’ appointment after Le Floc’h has decided to quit the office for personal reasons.
Thomas will be responsible to devise a commercial strategy for the 2022 World Cup in Qatar. FIFA currently has eight World Cup 2022 sponsors in the top two tiers. But there is no deal inked yet for third-tier sponsors.
Le Floc’h leaves FIFA after three years of a distinguished stint, during which he has been in charge for the World Cup sales since 2016.
Thomas has been a CEO of Switzerland-based agency TEAM Marketing, which has exclusive rights from UEFA to sell Champions League broadcast and sponsorship deals. He in the past has also worked with FIFA president Gianni Infantino during his two-year spell as TEAM CEO, as Infantino was the UEFA general secretary when TEAM Marketing distributed Champions League broadcast and sponsorship rights.
Thomas’ career includes spells working for Nike in Australia and with the local organizing committee in Sydney ahead of the 2000 Olympics. He was also global head of sport for the international Fox Sports Channel.
FIFA secretary-general Fatma Samoura while welcoming Thomas has said that his arrival “confirms FIFA’s commitment to forge ahead with the development of our in-house capabilities, the growth of our competitions, and the management of our sporting assets”.
“We believe that we are building the right team to take FIFA to the next level and to extract the full potential from a diverse and dynamic media and sponsorship marketplace, the results of which will be invested straight back into the development of football across the entire world.”