Following the challenging last year faced by all at Equestrian Australia (EA) I am pleased to confirm that the Deed of Company Arrangement (DOCA) has been fully effectuated and EA has now exited the Voluntary Administration process.
Craig Shepard and Kate Conneely from KordaMentha, who were appointed as Voluntary Administrators in June 2020, have finalised all conditions of the DOCA and have handed back control of the organisation effective from today.
The new EA Board, who were appointed in October 2020, but were unable to formally act until the end of the DOCA now have the authority to govern the sport and lead it forward.
In my short time as Chairman of the new EA Board I have been impressed by the dedication, passion and resilience shown by the Australian equestrian community during this very difficult period; especially the management and staff of EA. This leaves me with no doubt that we can all work together in the best interest of the sport to build a better future for Equestrian Australia.
Whilst we are aware that the Voluntary Administration process was not a choice made by the wider membership and came at significant expense, both financially and also in terms of our reputation, the new EA Board are committed to guiding EA into the next chapter based on transparency, open communication and inclusivity.
The process to rebuild EA to best deliver services to all members and stakeholders will be a large undertaking, and the immediate priorities for the new EA Board include:
Managing the smooth transition out of Voluntary Administration
Ensuring the financial stability of EA including securing the reinstatement of core funding from Sport Australia.
Appointment of a new permanent CEO of EA
Understanding the needs of the membership and identifying the optimum structure and resources required to deliver services efficiently
Re-establish positive working relationships with our key external stakeholders including Sport Australia, FEI, Australian Olympic Committee and Paralympics Australia
Review and update as required the EA strategic plan to ensure it is representative of the current and future needs of the sport
Complete the process of governance reform that began during the VA process
Providing a fair, transparent and consistent framework for resolving complaints and disputes in our sport
Supporting the EA High Performance Panel and AIS as they help prepare our elite athletes to represent our country in Tokyo and beyond.
I look forward with optimism and confidence that the new Board and management of EA is well positioned to work collaboratively with all EA members, the State Boards, National Discipline & Coaching Committees to deliver great outcomes for the Australian equestrian sport community.
Chairman of the Board of Directors
Article courtesty of Equestrian Australia