Gender equality highlighted by 2023 leaders

  • Jane Fernandez, COO FIFA Women’s World Cup (Australia), and Jane Patterson, COO FIFA Women’s World Cup (New Zealand) presented a joint keynote at the Business of Sport Summit, in Sydney / Gadigal, Australia

  • In its 11th year, the Business of Sport Summit is the agenda setting event for Australia’s Sporting Industry

  • Fernandez and Patterson highlighted how the FIFA Women’s World Cup Australia & New Zealand 2023 will unite both countries and inspire the next generation of women in football

On 26 June 2020, Australia and New Zealand celebrated its successful bid to host the 2023 FIFA Women's World Cup™, which will see the world’s biggest women’s sporting event co-hosted by two countries, across two confederations, for the very first time.

Over the next 13 months, the two women leading the charge in their respective countries and tasked with bringing this tournament to life are Jane Fernandez, COO FIFA Women’s World Cup (Australia), and Jane Patterson, COO FIFA Women’s World Cup (New Zealand).

Recently, Fernandez and Patterson joined forces to present a keynote at the Business of Sport Summit in Sydney / Gadigal.

The Business of Sport Summit is a prestigious event that congregates local and international business leaders from all sectors of the sports industry. Celebrating its 11th year, the theme for the 2022 edition – ‘Renewing Resilience’ – saw sporting leaders from around the globe connect to combat shared challenges, and discuss how the sports industry has renewed by leveraging opportunities that have emerged post-Covid.

Jane Patterson, COO FIFA Women’s World Cup (New Zealand) presents joint keynote at the Business of Sport Summit in Sydney.

Fernandez and Patterson highlighted how the FIFA Women’s World Cup 2023 will inspire the next generation, by putting female athletes front and centre at one of the world’s biggest sporting events.

Fernandez explained: “Our vision for the tournament is greater than just delivering a world class event, we want to move the dial for women’s football and gender equality.

“The tournament will be a vehicle to promote Australia and New Zealand to billions of people globally, while bringing in an estimated 85,000 international visitors to both host countries. What better way to remind people that Australia and New Zealand are back open for business.”

Patterson added that the aim of the tournament is to deliver ‘one World Cup’ despite its co-hosted nature, she said: “We want a seamless experience for teams, players, media, volunteers and commercial partners. This is our opportunity to showcase the beautiful game to a new and growing audience and shine a spotlight on women’s sport like never before.”

Jane Patterson and Jane Fernandez, COO's FIFA Women’s World Cup (New Zealand & Australia) at the Business of Sport Summit in Sydney.

In addition to growing women’s football in Australia and New Zealand, attention was drawn to the investment FIFA is making on a global scale including the boost of over US$1 billion into women’s football globally during the current four-year cycle, with the aim of doubling female participation into football globally, to 60 million players by the end of 2026.

Inspired by the feats of their nation’s best footballers, both Fernandez and Patterson highlighted how their trans-Tasman teams have been working together to deliver a tournament of firsts in 2023. “We are determined to deliver a tournament just like how our national teams play,” said Patterson.

“With strength, with confidence and with creativity... this is how we plan to go Beyond Greatness in 2023.”