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Oliver Kahn to make internationalization a top priority at Bayern Munich

Kahn has ambitious visions for the future of Bayern and he’s putting all the right pieces in place.

FC Bayern Muenchen Unveils New Signing Marcel Sabitzer Photo by Alexander Hassenstein/Getty Images for FC Bayern

Oliver Kahn has officially been Bayern Munich’s new CEO for over a year now and he has bold ambitions for the future of the club as a whole. One of his first initiatives as CEO was to implement “FC Bayern AHEAD,” which was designed to help develop strategies for the future of the club and better the fan experience in conjunction with Bayern’s supervisory board. It’s what he referred to as a “holistic club strategy that reduces complexity and provides direction.”

In his first days as the club’s CEO, he had all of Bayern’s employees take a survey to give their thoughts on how they felt the company was run and where positive changes could potentially be made. Naturally, Kahn faced a lot of hurdles in the start of his tenure as CEO due to the coronavirus pandemic, but he’s working incredibly hard to keep everything driving forward. Most recently, he’s called for a push to work on the continued strengthening of the club’s internationalization efforts, which has long been headed by Jorg Wacker (Tz).

Per Tz’s report, Kahn presented to Bayern’s supervisory board in a meeting at the end of August to outline his plans for emphasis on internationalization for the club, with the idea that both he and club president Herbet Hainer would be spearheading those efforts. The brand already has incredible success in Europe, Asia, and the United States, but Kahn, Hainer, and the rest of Bayern’s board want to continue expanding to help promote strong brand awareness, not only just for the football team, but the basketball and handball teams as well.

As someone who’s responsibility it has been to work on internationalization at Bayern, it is unclear just how much of a part Jorg Wacker will play in Kahn’s plans moving forward. He still has a contract with the club until 2023, but it’s becoming increasingly clear that Kahn is taking on more responsibility and assuming more power as a result. Since July 1, 2013, Wacker has been “Board Member for Internationalization and Strategy” and has also been responsible for the merchandising and licensing area of FC Bayern München Merchandising AG & Co KG since November 2015. He’s played an integral role in the development of Bayern brand awareness across the globe, but it’s unclear how much more he’ll be involved under Kahn’s watch.

In addition to former president Uli Hoeness, former CEO Karl-Heinz Rummenigge, and Hainer, Wacker is also a member of Bayern’s supervisory board that’s involved in the decision-making processes at the club. Starting in November, Wacker will also be assuming a seat on the executive board for the European Club Association, which Rummenigge used to serve on.