Date:Sunday October 31 2010
Operational director Brendan Flood diversified into the world of US Football this week whilst it was also announced in the Lancashire Telegraph that a number of board changes at Turf Moor looked likely
The Flood Gates Open in US
Flood now has a financial stake in US club, Austin Aztex after joining forces with current Aztex president Phil Rawlins, who also owns 15 per cent of Stoke City. The two have formed UK consortium, Orlando Sports Holdings along with North Carolina businessman Dan Williams and chief executive Steve Donner. Aztex currently play in the USSF Division 2 Professional League which is the second tier of North American soccer. The club though will move from Texas to Florida and become Orlando City Soccer Club for the start of the 2011 campaign with the future aim of applying for a Major League Soccer franchise . Next season though, they will play in the new USL Pro League.
The financial climate has made it impossible for the club to remain in Austin. Their manager and our former player and gaffer, Adrian Heath will now relocate with his squad to Florida. Heath has been manager of the Aztex since 2008 and also recently signed a new three-year deal,
Talking about the initiative Flood said:
"I firmly believe that the USA will be a force in world football within the next decade and Orlando will be a great location to develop a franchise with an experienced management team directed by Phil,"
"I am personally excited by the opportunity and I hope that my relationships and knowledge of the game will help Orlando."
It should be noted that this is a personal investment by Flood rather than one involving Burnley FC. Burnley did have an interest in US club, Cary Clarets after agreeing a two-year affiliation with the North Carolina club in November 2008. They played in the USL Premier Development League, the US fourth tier but sadly the franchise folded at the end of 2009. Clearly though the links were there for Flood to set up this new initiative. Flood will also remain a major shareholder at Burnley and will continue his role at the club
All A Board for the Changes
A Burnley FC spokesman has confirmed to the Lancashire Telegraph that there will be a Board meeting at Burnley next week to agree a number of Board changes at the club.
The official statement read:
"A board meeting will be held next week and a statement will be made after that meeting."
The local paper understands that the meeting will take place on Monday night and that Burnley FC will aim to scale down their board of directors, with the intention of voting on businessman John Banaszkiewicz to replace four other long-serving directors
It is no wonder he goes by the nickname of John B with such a tongue twisting surname but it is thought he has bought out the shares of John Turkington, Chris Duckworth, Martin Hobbs and John Sullivan.
Operational director Brendan Flood will continue to work for the club in the same capacity and Barry Kilby will remain Chairman. Mike Garlick is also set to retain his place on the board along with Clive Holt.
So what do we know about John Banaszkiewicz?
Well first of all he is an avid Clarets fan, locally born in Nelson and one obviously with money to invest in the club, so that`s a good start! He is married with four kids and has a BA (Hons) in Business Studies from Newcastle Upon Tyne University
John B is also the co-founder and managing director of UK-based brokers Freight Investor Solutions Ltd. Formed in October 2002 the company has grown steadily over the years and now has annual revenue of up to £25 million with offices in the United States, Greece, Japan, and Singapore. It is not known how much money he will pump into the club but he did finance the pre-season tour of Singapore showing his intentions of greater things to come.
Vital Burnley wish to thank Burnley FC for use of the photograph
Date:Sunday October 31 2010
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