Kontinental Hockey League President Dmitry Chernyshenko has addressed the annual Accord Sport Convention – an important gathering of leading figures in many winter sports, held under the auspices of the august Russian newspaper, Vedomosti, and staged this year in the Olympic city of Sochi.
In a speech to the assembled dignitaries, Mr. Chernyshenko stressed the need to optimize the sources of financing for sport: “Sponsorship currently accounts for more than 80% of professional sport’s funding, and as so much national prestige is linked to performances in sport, then this, too, has been placed firmly on the shoulders of sponsors. It is a good thing, of course, that the clubs are being financed, but we also need to make them less dependent on the state. This should be a gradual process, and we are working on it.”
The KHL President also joined in a panel discussion, The Truth about Legacies, in which the participants covered many aspects of global sporting events and their effects on the marketing and social components of sport. Opening the session, Deputy Prime Minister of Russia, Arkady Dvorkovich, said: “We are very pleased with the early signs of Sochi's Olympic legacy. The number of young local residents involved in sport increased tenfold after the Winter Olympics, and Sochi’s cable ski resorts alone have received half a million tourists since the Games. The task of the government is to ensure unified management and year-round use of the facilities constructed for the Olympics. This is our specific mission for the near future.”
Mr. Chernyshenko, in his speech, mentioned that Sochi in the post-Olympic period has being hosting global sports events at a rate of two per month, which has far exceeded expectations, and he added, “We are very pleased to see that all our plans for the 2014 Olympics have come to fruition, and I am sure that our addressing the question of continuity and legacy was a key factor in this success.”