SBJ/October 31-November 6, 2011/People and Pop Culture

Knut Frostad, CEO, Volvo Ocean Race

Six teams are to set off from Alicante, Spain, this week in a nine-month competition covering nearly 40,000 miles. Frostad knows the race well — he sailed in it four times.

PROFESSIONAL

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What I Like …


An insight: The journey of raising your self-awareness!

An influential person in my career: Frank Beck, my personal mentor since I was 18.

An out-of-the-box idea: Breaking all the branding rules and introducing a pink professional sailing team!

A timeless idea: Highlight the legacy and history of what you are doing. Legends and history never go out of fashion!

A business deal: Closing my first main sponsor for the Whitbread race [former name of the Volvo race]: $8 million from the Kvaerner Group.
KNUT FROSTAD
CEO, Volvo Ocean Race

Where I'm from: I am from Oslo, Norway, but live in Alicante, Spain.

Where I Went to School: Oslo Business School.

My First Job: Working at my grandfather's graphic and printing company running around with Letrasets and putting headlines, letter by letter.


A sports facility: The Abu Dhabi Yas Marina Circuit for Formula One. Stunning!

A sports event: The Lillehammer Winter Games in ’92. Made for and by the people!

A strategy: Us against the rest of the world — building a tribe! (Apple’s Steve Jobs)

A hire: My whole team at Volvo Ocean Race is the best you can get!

A brand: Apple.

A trend: Fitness — can only be positive!

An innovation: Social media.

A pro league or team business initiative: McLaren’s video promos building the relationship between Hamilton and Button.

A story that bears watching: Can’t think of one — there are too many …

An idea or invention I wish I had thought of: The 3-D animation by Pixar: Cars! Could be done with boats! Brilliant idea and execution!

A fantasy job: Movie director.

What I Like About …

My job: A global challenge, to make it work with 10 countries and cultures and at the same time manage an event where Mother Nature still rules.

Sports fans: Passion and enthusiasm regardless of background, nationality and culture!

Sports: It unites the world across any borders and reminds us that the world is still a great place to be! Sport can also move and make impact beyond the athletes and their race.

Sports business: Passion, passion, passion and lots of people with it!

Sports media: Helping build the reputation of sports to become a more professional industry.

Sports technology: When you add a real competitive element to R&D there are no limits how far athletes and teams will go — and the boats will just become faster and faster!

Competing: The best way to receive feedback!

The future of sports business: It’s bright.


What I’d Like To …

Change: How we preserve the ocean.

Change in what I do: Build our event into something much bigger and double the audience in 12 months!

See: Nepal.

See more of in sports: Passion and true personalities.

See more of in sports business: Real statistics showing the reality.

See less of in sports: Talks about money and salaries.

See less of in sports business: Boring advertising and branding with just logos and no creativity.

See different: People — can always see others differently.

Eliminate: Technical barriers stopping the fans.


What I Don’t Like …

In general: Anyone who talks more than he walks.
 
Pet peeve: When things are not straight and symmetric (when they are supposed to be).

In business: Someone not delivering what was agreed.


PERSONAL
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What I Like …

That would surprise those who know me: I would have loved to be a saxophonist!

Above all else: My family.

About myself: Never ever give up …

Hero: Steve Jobs.

Player: Lionel Messi.

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Team: FC Barcelona.

City: London.

Possession: Pictures from the past.

Memory: First day across the ocean in Whitbread 1993-94.

Time of year (because): Autumn — more wind!

Music: Jazz.

Books: Not a big reader.

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Magazine: National Geographic.

Gadgets: The Mac and great loudspeakers!

Hobby: Windsurfing.

Trip: The Amazon.

Concert: The Wall — many years ago …

Artist: Jamie Cullum.

Food: Sushi.

Dessert: Ice cream.

Drink: Water.

Vacation spots: Maui, Perth, Sardinia.

Car: Volvo XC60.

Singer: Radka Toneff.

Quote: “Be the change you want to see in the world.” — Gandhi
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