The 1. FC Union Berlin Annual General Meeting took place on Wednesday 27 November.
In the report of the Executive Committee, Union Berlin president Dirk Zingler pointed out the club's strengths: "As of today, we have 34,681 members. In recent years, we've always stressed how important it is for us that our independent and self-determined path in professional football is supported by the public. Therefore, we're very happy about this development and welcome each new member to the Union family."
Before 2,229 members who were present at the AGM, Dirk Zingler reported again the positive development in all the relevant business areas. For the 2018/19 season, the club generated income of EUR 54,687 million with costs at EUR 54,439 million and therefore, a profit margin of EUR 0,248 million.
The attendance average was 21,2017 and currently is at the maximum 22,012. Today, 1. FC Union Berlin have 306 employees and 452 partners and sponsors.
For the current season, the club expects further growth. Revenues are projected to be EUR 74,481 million with costs at EUR 74,356 million and a profit margin of EUR 0,125 million at the end of 2019/20.
Following the club's promotion to the Bundesliga, Zingler praised the overall sporting performance: "In the season just past, we actually achieved the greatest feat that 1. FC Union Berlin have ever set themselves: promotion to the Bundesliga. We made it into the Bundesliga with self-confidence and courage, and that's exactly how we wanted to approach it. All of the actions of people in the club have been geared to getting into the Bundesliga. Now everything is geared towards staying in the Bundesliga. We are doing the things that are economically possible for us to achieve this ambitious target."
On this season's performance, Zingler continued: "Of course we're happy with the 16 points collected so far. We enjoyed every game, every win. But we must remain focused, not let ourselves get distracted by the public exaggeration and songs of praise. We haven't achieved anything in this division yet. Our goal is and remains to stay in the league."
Stadium expansion and construction of new youth academy
The process for the project-related development plan to expand the Stadion An der Alten Försterei, which was submitted in September 2017, is taking much longer than expected. The main focus here is on future traffic development, especially around public transport. The aim is to complete this complex procedure in 2020 and obtain the desired planning rights.
The construction plans for the new youth academy centre are further ahead. Building work is to begin at Bruno-Bürgel-Weg in 2020.
Ratification of the actions of the Executive Committee, Supervisory Board and Honorary Board
In accordance with the supervisory board's responsibilities under the club's Articles of Association, the yearly financial statements were approved. The Executive Commitee's actions for the financial year were ratified. The General Meeting approved the actions of the Supervisory Board and the Honorary Board by a majority vote. Subsequently, the election of the Honorary Board was on the agenda of the General Meeting.
New Honorary Board elected
With a large majority, the former honorary council members Wolfgang Vallentin, Hartmut Felsch and Jörg Helmer were elected to the committee for a further term of four years. Meanwhile, Wolfgang Vallentin was voted as chairman.
Thanks to long-standing employees and first players
Immediately at the beginning of the general meeting, long-standing club employees were honoured who helped shape Union's way from the upper league to the Bundesliga.
They entered the stage with just as much applause as the first female players at the beginning of the evening, who first established a women's team at the 1st FC Union Berlin in autumn 1969.
1. FC Union Berlin legend Torsten Mattuschka was especially honoured and will in future take over responsibilities as an Official Ambassador for the club.
As tradition during the General Meeting, deserving Union members were honoured for their commitment:
The bronze badge of honour was awarded to:
Received the silver badge of honour:
Received the gold badge of honour:
The Programmers / Götz Geserick, Bernd Krüger, Stefan Hupe, Michael Schmidt and post-humous Andreas Freese
was appointed an honorary member:
Prof. Dr. Michael Kölmel