01 October 2015

Katrien Meire: Je ne regrette rien

The Belgian business newspaper L'Echo today features a fairly long interview with Katrien Meire. The provocative opening is "Le passé glorieux du club? Je m'en fous", which roughly translates as "I don't bloody care about the club's glorious past."  Although she later is quoted at more length, saying that the history should be cherished, but not at any price.

Most of the piece is about her restructuring of the club's admin and staffing. She says she reduced the number of staff from 150 to 100, by dismissals and sub-contracting. Apparently the food and drinks outlets were previously controlled by one person, who had no written agreement with the club, but who handed over a percentage of the takings, no questions asked. And there's a story of a near-disastrous exchange with a potential shirt sponsor. Meire claims that she herself negotiates all the transfers.

It's all very much what you'd expect a business executive to tell a business journal: I came, I saw, I swept away mismanagement. Some claims believable, some perhaps overstated. There's as usual no hint of what her boss's long-term plans are for the club.

But one peculiar claim is that she ceased the practice of giving free tea or coffee to fans on matchdays. When did that ever happen?
é glorieux de ce club? Je m’en fous
"Le passé glorieux de ce club? Je m’en fous"
"Le passé glorieux de ce club? Je m’en fous"
"Le passé glorieux de ce club? Je m’en fous"

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