LEN Congress 2014, Lake Garda (ITA)
LEN moves its HQ to Geneva
The LEN Congress held at Lake Garda (ITA) approved the LEN Bureau’s proposal to move the organisation’s headquarters from Luxembourg (LUX) to Geneva (SUI). LEN President Paolo Barelli presented his vision on LEN stepping into an extensive development period from the summer of 2015.
At the annual Congress held at Lake Garda (ITA) delegates of the LEN member federations approved the LEN Bureau’s proposal to move the organisation’s headquarters from Luxembourg (LUX) to Geneva (SUI). As LEN President Paolo Barelli and Executive Director Paulo Frischknecht underlined this step would put the organisation to an even better environment.
“Several major sport federations – including FINA – set up their respective HQs in Switzerland just as some of LEN’s main partners. For instance Eurovision is also settled in Geneva, which is a more accessible location for most of the federations and officials and some financial aspects also pushed us to take this wise step” LEN President Paolo Barelli said.
The Congress approved the President’s and the Treasurer’s reports on 2013. The latter one, presented by Tamas Gyarfas, drew up a rather ideal picture on LEN’s finances which were never as sound as it is now. Well-controlled expenditure, rising marketing fees paid by the future hosts of the major LEN Events and a new sponsorship deal with the Hungarian Tourist Board all contributed to make 2013 a profitable year and 2014 will also bring a surplus well beyond one million euros.
Based on these results President Paolo Barelli shared his vision with the delegates on LEN’s future which would feature an extensive development period from the summer of 2015. New marketing, communication and digital strategies, high level budget and event management and an extensive cooperation between and with the federations may turn Europe into the Number One continent in the world of aquatics in the upcoming years.
LEN has already found the hosts for its most important events: the next two long-course swimming European Championships will be held in Great Britain, in London in 2016 and in Glasgow in 2018, the 2016 water polo Europeans will be staged in Belgrade’s (SRB) largest indoor arena, while the 2015 short-course Europeans will visit Herzlia (ISR). Swimming, diving, synchro and water polo are on the programme of the first European Games in Baku 2015 where the best European juniors will compete. The Azeri hosts offered support for LEN and the participating member federations valuing 2 million euros.
The Congress – co-hosted by Myrtha Pools – concluded with awarding some of LEN’s longest serving officials. Paolo Barelli handed over LEN Pins for Honorary Life President Nory Kruchten and Honorary Members Sven Folvik and Robert Ebejer. Klaus Dibiasi (ITA), Ildiko Kelemen (HUN), Grete Kugler (AUT) and Simon Rothwell (GBR) received the LEN Gold Pin respectively, while Boris Golousun (BLR), Lukasz Jarochowski (POL), Evgeny Sharonov (RUS), Arne Tellefsen (NOR) and Andreas Tschanz (SUI) were all awarded LEN Silver Pin for their outstanding efforts in the past decades.