Best pitch presenter you’ve ever seen:
I’ve seen a few good ones but I’ll go with Gavin Megaw at Hanover/The Playbook. Incredible ability to make a persuasive argument and sell ideas to people.
Best sports marketing campaign (that wasn’t yours):
Showing my age a bit here, but the Nike/Brazil airport ad for the 98 World Cup sticks out as the first time I can remember a brand making football seem genuinely glamorous and exciting and really announced Nike’s arrival in the sport.
Best agency (that isn’t yours):
If I can have two, I think Ear To The Ground and Halfspace are both doing really impressive things around fusing data, insight and creativity to make an impact in sport.
Best young industry talent:
Not as young as he used to be, but Duncan Ross at Wasserman was one of the best people I hired in my agency days. Great with clients, great with media and an all-round good guy.
Best sporting event attended:
As a Derby County fan I’ve been to a few Championship playoff finals, mostly losing ones. For sheer atmosphere, jeopardy and the importance of the result, I don’t think many events can beat it.
Best sporting event on TV:
Best brand ambassador:
David Beckham in his prime had an incredible power to generate fame and shift product for a brand. These days it’s all about athletes with an authentic voice and connection, so the likes of Rashford, Osaka and Biles. Emma Raducanu could be huge if she is managed properly.
Best industry event or conference:
Has to be the Sport Industry Awards
Best film containing a scene depicting the sports business:
Jerry Maguire, for what is presumably a 100% authentic portrayal of life as a US sports agent
Best book recommendation:
- Sports book: Shoe Dog by Phil Knight
- Serious business book: Good Strategy/Bad Strategy by Richard Rumelt
Best bar or pub:
Don’t be silly, I’ve got three kids
Restaurant Twenty-Two in Cambridge is delicious
Best holiday resort:
Spent my honeymoon in Lombok. Basically paradise, would love to go back one day
Best box set:
Breaking Bad was pretty addictive
Best influence on your career:
Jim Hawker (my co-founder at Threepipe) was always very good at the things I wasn’t, and vice-versa.
Best dinner companions (min 4, max 6):
If I’m allowed dead people I’ll say Brian Clough, Bobby Robson, Alex Ferguson, Arsene Wenger and Jurgen Klopp.
Best job in the sports biz:
I would love to get hold of a sport like golf and find ways to genuinely make it more accessible and appealing for more people to play
Best professional regret:
None really but I do remember discussing Bitcoin in the office around 2013 and dismissing it as a weird, geeky novelty. Same thing with Ethereum in 2016. Follow me for more crypto investment tips
Best skill you most covet:
I’d love to be able to draw or paint well. My Dad can, but that gene has skipped a generation
Best trait you admire in others:
People who are really good at thinking on their feet and coming up with convincing answers to questions on the spot. I usually need to go away and think about things for a bit
Best overrated virtue:
To continue working in this great sector and hopefully making a positive impact for my clients, while achieving a decent balance and being around for my family. And to play golf in single figures.