A new, high profile members networking club for sports stars, senior executives working within sports and sports lovers with a permanent home will be launched in June in Manchester.
The Manchester Sporting Club will be housed inside the iconic Manchester Hall and will be open for business, networking, events and pure fun just in time for the start of the football World Cup.
It will be available for members to meet, conduct business, network and relax, and stage a good number of exclusive events featuring well-known figures from sport and the business of sport.
The MSC follows hot on the footsteps of the London Sporting Club which, one year after launch, has taken the capital by storm.
The LSC, based both in Mayfair and the City, boasts hundreds of members across sport, marketing, brands, sponsorship, broadcast/media, finance, law, property, insurance, health and fitness and a wide range of other professions either linked to the sports business or just sports lovers.
And, in the past year, the LSC has staged purposefully intimate lunches with a who’s who of sport including: Eddie Jones, Sir Steve Redgrave, Kumar Sangakkara, David Coulthard, Michael Johnson, Sam Allardyce, “The Three Dames” (Katherine Grainger, Kelly Holmes and Laura Davies), Sir Clive Woodward, Andrew Strauss, Sam Warburton, Frankie Dettori, Harry Redknapp, Frank Bruno and Sugar Ray Leonard. Next up is Lizzy Yarnold in April, Lord Sebastian Coe in May and Sir Geoff Hurst in June.
The LSC has also staged numerous business breakfasts with the likes of International Cricket Council CEO David Richardson, World Rugby CEO Brett Gosper, Barry Hearn and European Tour CEO Keith Pelley. Coming up is Sky Sports MD Barney Francis and Bournemouth FC Chairman Jeff Mostyn, as well as other events such as a Jonny Bairstow book signing, a dinner with Graeme Souness and a Sport and Conservation evening with Crista Cullen. Future events also include an Evening with Clive Anderson, a Quiz hosted by “The Chase’s” Paul Sinha and a book signing with Judy Murray.
The LSC – and the MSC – prides itself on its diversity which is why the membership features all ages, backgrounds, races, sex and sexuality. It also promotes a Women in Sport and Business Club called “The Heraean” which stages its own events with purposefully split male/female audiences.
The main USP, however, is the proactive networking mechanism that the LSC has in place which ensures that all members get to know each other to open the possibility of friendships and business. Its secure online members forum allows members to interact at all times, ensuring that they can continue to connect to one another between events.
All of this will be repeated at the MSC and all MSC members will automatically become members of the LSC at no extra cost. The intention is to create a global network of 20 Sporting Clubs over the next few years.
Ian Stafford, the Founder and Chairman of Sporting Club Holdings Ltd, which owns the LSC and the MSC, explains:
“Manchester was always going to be the second club we launched after London.” The journalist, author, broadcaster and speaker continued, “We have multiple options across Europe and beyond but I always wanted to open in Manchester as soon as we felt London was settled and established because of its huge sporting heritage.
“However, apart from the obvious sporting links to Manchester, the city is also developing at an amazing rate of knots to become a truly international city in its own right. I don’t see the MSC as some kind of “add-on” to the LSC. I see it as a very important club in its own right and we intend to bring the best people to it as members or star guests, to help create the right kind of business for our members and, of course, we must have some fun too. We can’t wait to get started.”
Marc Yaffe has been appointed as Chairman of The MSC. As Head of Litigation at JMW Solicitors LLP and founder of the award-winning platform Barn Door, he was chosen due to his prolific sporting and business connections in the North West. Marc has also recently joined the board of the Diane Modahl Sports Foundation.
Marc Yaffe added: “I am delighted to have been appointed as Chairman of The Manchester Sporting Club. Manchester has an incredible sporting pedigree so it makes sense for Ian to start the next Sporting Club venture in Manchester. The club has had some tremendous sporting speakers in London and the format of each event presents a unique opportunity for business networking. I feel that there is an obvious synergy between The MSC and JMW’s Barn Door platform, where we connect sporting personalities with business opportunities to help them prepare for life beyond sport. I am looking forward to working with Ian to deliver an unrivalled schedule of events and unparalleled networking offering at Manchester Hall.”
Deepa Parekh, Director at Manchester Hall, said: “Manchester Hall is proud to be supporting such a great initiative with such a prestigious name like LSC. Manchester is known for its community spirit and being home to media and sport, a networking club is most definitely needed. As the Manchester home for LSC and MSC members, we will be able to provide flexibility to members; whether they are attending an MSC event, need dinner in our restaurant Masons, a meeting room, or simply access to the rooftop terrace and bedrooms. We are all about becoming a lifestyle in Manchester, providing quality food and drink with impeccable service. We can’t wait to be hosting you all here, so you can get a true taste of Mancunian hospitality.”
For more information on the Manchester Sporting Club go to www.manchestersportingclub.com