One may easily say that Gino Pozzo has the Midas touch. Every business endeavor he has engaged in has been more than a success. The Owner of the UK-based Watford Club and the co-owner of the Udinese Calcio Club was born into the world of football.
His parents were avid fans and supporters of the Udinese Calcio Football club. They were the good Samaritans that came to the rescue of the club when it was near financial ruin in the year 1986. They bought the club with the profits from their successful woodworking business.
The Pozzo family transformed the club by acquiring new players who would then improve the prestige of the club. They took it from the lower divisions into the Serie A league and even made an appearance at the prestigious UEFA champion’s league. Since the takeover by the Pozzo’s, the club has maintained its position in the Serie A league.
But that was just a start for Gino Pozzo. In 2008, the Pozzo family chose to sell their woodworking business and use the proceeds to create more impact in the football world. In 2009, Gino Pozzo teamed up with Giampaolo to purchase the Granada Football Club in Spain.
The team was going through a financial meltdown at the moment. Overridden with debt, and in one of its worst conditions ever, the club fell through the rankings down to the third division.
Again, Pozzo was able to revive the club and help it position itself among some of the best teams in the world, such as F.C. Barcelona and Real Madrid in the Primera Liga. The success story of Granada earned Pozzo a reputation as one of the best football club owners. In 2016, he was able to sell the club for 37 million Euros.
Before doing away with the Granada club, Gino Pozzo had taken on another club that was also in a financial crisis and falling out of grace: the Watford Football Club. He purchased it in 2012, and a year later, he decided to move to London with his whole family so that he can focus on rebuilding the club.
There are speculations that the reason he sold the Granada club was so that he can solely focus on the Watford Football Club. He then did his magic and made radical changes to the leadership of the club. Within a few years, the results of his administration were impressive.
In 2019 Watford made it to the English Premier League, the top league in England. Not only that, but they were also able to participate in the FA Cup final with an impressive performance. The promotion of Watford to the Premier League was a guarantee that Gino Pozzo would get not less than 150 million Euros from television rights.
Without his leadership, would the club have gotten there? Probably not. Gino’s success streams from working with only people that he trusts. He strives to build a perfect team for every club that he gets his hands on. And from everyone, he demands a flawless performance.
Gino’s tactics to grow almost collapsing teams were excellent. Since he owned more than one football club in different locations, he could move players between teams, creating an impact in all his clubs. Such a strategy was one of the reasons his teams were able to rise the ranks very fast. Moreover, the growth was also a result of only using the best scouts in the world to find the best players that he signed and developed until they became world-class players.
Gino’s foresight was impeccable. His ability to identify successful business opportunities amidst failing clubs is a quality not many leaders can replicate. Is it his love for football or his drive for success that made him take on such risky ventures? It isn’t easy to tell.