The National Sports Academy of Sofia (Bulgaria) conferred the title of Honorary Professor to WBSC President Riccardo Fraccari.
“I am humbled and honored” said Fraccari “I wish to thank Rector Geshev and Youri Alkalay, Vice President of the European Softball Federation, President of the Softball Federation of Bulgaria and Vice President of the Baseball Federation of Bulgaria”.
Riccardo Fraccari based his lectio magistralis (lecture) on “the challenges and responsibilities going along with becoming President of an International Sports Federation”.
Before talking of the merging process of the International Baseball Federation (IBAF) with the International Softball Federation (ISF) into the WBSC, Fraccari described the situation of the IBAF as he was elected in December 2009: “The tournaments had little value and the exclusion from the Olympic Programme left no real development opportunity”.
Fraccari described his strategy as based on the creation of new tournaments. The first step to create value was getting the best players to represent their countries. This led to the inclusion of the most important professional leagues as associated members of the International Federation.
The new business oriented tournament host bidding process created the opportunity to increse revenues. The Premier12 was the breathrough event to finally make WBSC sustainable.
The inclusion in the Programme of the 2020 Olympics gives all National Federations new visibility and development opportunities through funding from their Government or the National Olympic Committee.
Fraccari’s conclusion matched his vision: “Any World Governing Body has the goal to develop the sport globally”.