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2017 Inside Asian Gaming Power 50: Number 15 - Winfried Engelbrecht-Bresges

Tuesday, 05 December 2017 14:28
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15 Winfried Engelbrecht-Bresges

CHIEF EXECUTIVE OFFICER
Hong Kong Jockey Club

POWER SCORE
1,313

LAST YEAR
17

CLAIMS TO FAME
• Driving force behind the modernization and revitalization of the HKJC
• Has helped HKJC become Hong Kong’s biggest employer

Twelve months after its annual turnover declined for the first time in seven years, the Hong Kong Jockey Club (HKJC) made an emphatic statement in 2016-17 with record turnover of HK$216.5 billion – a 6.8% increase on the previous year and enough to ensure the government received an all-time high of HK$21.7 billion in tax revenue.

Run as a non-profit, the HKJC is the city’s biggest taxpayer and donates millions in surplus revenue each year to charities and community causes. It is also the most successful of any racing club in the world, led by its core horse racing business which saw turnover grow 7.9% last season to HK$115.8 billion.

The man behind this incredible success is CEO Winfried Engelbrecht-Bresges. Arriving in 1998 as racing director before taking on the top job nine years later, the former German youth football team player has transformed HKJC from a second-rate, highly introverted organization to one that is the envy of the racing world.

Under Engelbrecht-Bresges’ watch, HKJC has invested millions into transforming almost every aspect of the business – from redevelopment of Sha Tin Racecourse under the Racecourse Master Plan to the quality of horses running and extensive customer segmentation work to provide a complete race day experience.

The vastly improved product that is Hong Kong racing has subsequently enjoyed an explosion in popularity which has transferred directly to the betting ring – most notably via commingling with a number of lucrative overseas deals signed since HKJC was granted permission to commingle in 2013. New additions in 2016-17 included the UK Tote and Woodbine Entertainment Group in Toronto, helping commingling turnover soar by 87% yearon- year to HK$6.5 billion.

To return to the full list of 2017 Asian Gaming Power 50 winners, click here.

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