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General Manager, New Zealand – NZ Sports Turf Institute (Labosport)

General Manager, New Zealand – NZ Sports Turf Institute (Labosport)

About the company

Labosport is a leading group of independent laboratories and institutes dedicated to sports surfaces, testing and certification.

With 140 employees in 13 countries, the Group offers a wide portfolio of test methods as well as consultancy services for natural turf and synthetic sport surfaces. The Group draws on the latest developments in the field of agronomy, engineering, and chemical analyses.

New Zealand Sports Turf Institute (NZSTI) is a member of the Labosport group, a world-class, full-service, sports turf consultancy group specialising in natural and artificial sports surfaces.  One of the oldest and most respected consulting body for turf maintenance and management, the company has also successfully developed over the years new services such as field design & consultancy and unrivalled education & training services.  It plays a pivotal role for the Group.

Overall job purpose

The General Manager, New Zealand is a Director level role with delegated authority, responsible for delivering the overall strategic plan for New Zealand, as defined and validated regularly with Labosport Group CEO and Managing Director Asia, particularly during budget reviews.

This strategy should comply with the main orientations given by the Labosport Group Committee and can be summarised as follows:

  • Labosport, the world leader in sport surfaces and equipment certification, aims to be the world leading technical expert in sports surfaces and floorings, delivering a “high tech” service globally to the sports industry and all those involved in the realisation of sports infrastructures.
  • Labosport aim to be present on all types of surfaces (natural, hybrid, artificial) in all relevant sports.  Each subsidiary is required to progressively develop the corresponding expertise with support of the Group.

The service offer of the Group is built on four dimensions:

  • Technical assistance and advisory services
  • Technical certification
  • Audit & diagnosis
  • Education (Labosport Education & Training)

Reporting & Location

  • Directly reports to: NZSTI Board and Labosport MD Asia, based in Guangzhou, China
  • Based: Auckland (preferred) or Palmerston North, New Zealand
  • Remuneration: Competitive salary, bonus, and vehicle.

Key responsibilities

Business Development and Account Management:

  • Is responsible for setting the overall sales and commercial strategy for key accounts (key federations, key architects, new markets) and the development of profitable turnover.
  • Creating strategies to obtain new clients and retain existing partners while generating revenue opportunities.
  • Managing multi layered stakeholders internally and externally, with significant relationship management.
  • Participates in and attends trade associations, fairs and conferences to represent the brand of NZSTI/ Labosport.
  • Represents the company to major National Governing Bodies and International Federations of Sport in order to develop standards and service offerings for them.
  • Regularly networks with sport architects and installers, stadium owners, groundkeepers, partners, clients, administrations, etc.
  • Promotes the new test methods and innovation developed by the Group to the New Zealand market.
  • Contributes to the development of performance standards for sport surfaces in the region.
  • Follows group rules for pricing and discounts.
  • Is responsible for the production on time and in quality of testing/consultancy reports.

Human Resources:                                                                                            

  • Develops an employee-oriented company culture that emphasises on quality, continuous improvement, key employee retention and development, and high performance.
  • Develops and manages HR processes for the team (managing feedback, annual performance reviews, salary reviews and succession planning etc).
  • Works closely with international offices to help align global corporate policies with local requirements.
  • Adapts the organisation according to needs.
  • Is responsible to maintain and develop certification and competencies of technicians (e.g. NZQA accreditation, ISO 17025, trainings).


  • Prepares yearly financial accounts with the accounting in a timely manner, organises accounts reviews, explains year-on-year variations and proposes optimisations.
  • Reports monthly to the Group the company financial indicators (turnover, orders, profit, receivables and cash) versus previous year and budget, as well as key events for the month.
  • Proposes yearly budget, proposes investments, and is responsible for budget xecution.

Legal, Internal Control and Quality:

  • Coordinates legal aspects of the company with the accountant.
  • Maintains adequate controls (signatures, validation, capex authorisation) in line with the Power of Attorney.
  • Ensures the company complies with laws and regulations and is responsible for internal control.
  • Ensures that the company follows the Group operating procedures or guidelines for all tests and all technicians.
  • Maintains proper professional insurance for the company.

Essential experience

  • Proven leadership skills with a track record of supporting a team of high-performing individuals to enhance the reputation of an organisation.
  • Experience of creating and leading a sales and commercial strategy resulting in positive financial returns.

Key performance indicators

  • Company turnover, new business and people leadership.
  • Company EBITDA and EBIT margin.
  • Scope of services proposed and development of new markets (4 pillars on all surfaces and sports).
  • Team retention and expertise.

Key working relationships

Group CEO, peer MDs, Group Head of functions, direct reports, customers, communities, architects, installers, sports federations, National norm committees, and Universities.

How to apply

SRI is a boutique global executive search and consulting firm, servicing the rapidly converging industries of sport, media, content and technology.

We work as one partner-led team with teams based in key global markets across eleven offices on four continents. We offer dedicated and specific sector, function and regional expertise. Our activities extend beyond traditional executive search and include board assessment, succession planning, salary benchmarking, advising clients on their internal and external hiring strategy, new market entry and multi-vacancy projects.

We are proud to be the exclusive partner in this search with NZSTI part of the Labosport Group.

For a confidential discussion about this role please contact Josie Lahey on +61478803255 or submit your application with CV and covering letter to jlahey@sriexecutive.com as soon as possible.

Visa support will be provided to the preferred candidate if an international applicant.

Tagged as: #consulting, Commercial, Education, General Manager, GM, New Zealand, Sport Surfaces, Training

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