How rich is Aki Watzke?
Hans-Joachim Watzke, usually just called Aki, has been the managing director of Borussia Dortmund since 2005. As such, in 2006 he was instrumental in averting the impending bankruptcy of the club. He then played his part in making BVB one of the best clubs in Europe. Two championships and two DFB Cup victories as well as the entry into the Champions League final in 2013 shaped the Watzke era at Borussia. The cherished Hans-Joachim Watzke’s fortune is 20 million euros.
How much money does Hans-Joachim Watzke earn at Borussia Dortmund
As a listed company, Borussia Dortmund has to disclose how much the club’s management earns. According to this, Hans-Joachim Watzke receives an annual fixed salary, which in 2012 amounted to 750,000 euros. There is also a bonus that depends on the economic and sporting success of the club. This amounted to around 1.4 million euros in 2012 and almost 2.2 million euros in 2013. After Contract extension in 2014, Watzke’s base salary increased to 900,000 euros.
The salary of the BVB boss
In 2016/17, Watzke renewed his contract, which meant that he could expect a fixed salary of 1.68 million euros annually. This salary increased over the years. In 2017/18, Watzke’s annual salary was 1.723 million euros. Subsequently, the annual salary in 2018/19 was already 1.9 million euros. As BVB boss Aki Watzke earned in In 2019/20 a fixed base salary of 1.8 million euros. In addition to the annual salary, there is a corresponding remuneration depending on the business success. His performance-related bonus amounted to EUR 528.00 in 2017/18 and EUR 720,000 in 2018/19. In the 2019/20 financial year, no performance-related bonus was paid to the management. With the salary as BVB boss Aki Watzke continues to expand his fortune.
Fan of BVB even as a child
Hans-Joachim Watzke comes from Marsberg in the Sauerland, just under 100 kilometers from Dortmund as the crow flies. There he played football for SV Rot-Weiß Erlinghausen since childhood. After graduating from school in 1978, he studied business administration and then worked for a company that manufactures protective clothing. With his there acquired knowledge, he founded his own company in 1990: Watex Schutz-Bekleidungs GmbH. In 1996 Watzke became a member of Borussia Dortmund. As a seven-year-old, he and his father attended the club’s first game at the Rote Erde stadium in Dortmund.
The savior of Borussia Dortmund
In 2001 Aki Watzke became Borussia Dortmund’s treasurer. Four years later he took over the position of managing director of the club. At that time the club was in great financial difficulties. The mountain of debt amounted to 90 million euros, BVB was on the verge of bankruptcy. Together with club president Reinhard Rauball and the managing director responsible for finances and organization Thomas Treß Watzke made sure that Borussia Dortmund escaped insolvency in 2006. This was achieved by the management trio restructuring the club’s liabilities, reducing players’ salaries by 20 percent and minimizing other costs. In addition, the naming rights of the Westfalenstadion, the home of Borussia, were sold.
With these measures, Watzke and his colleagues reorganized the club financially and soon led him into safe waters in terms of sport. In the summer of 2008, BVB hired Jürgen Klopp as a coach, who was able to celebrate the German championship with the team in 2011 and 2012 and the victory in the DFB Cup in 2012. In addition, the Dortmund team moved into the Champions League final in 2013. This established the club at the top of European football. Borussia won another title in the Watzke era in 2017 with the DFB Cup.
Association chairman, company partner, book author
In addition to his work at Borussia Dortmund, Aki Watzke is also the first chairman of his home club SV Rot-Weiß Erlinghausen. He handed over the management of Watex to his wife Annette in 2005, and his son André joined the company in 2019 after successfully completing his business studies. Watzke himself is a partner in the company, which has an annual turnover between 15 and 20 million euros. In 2019 Aki Watzke published his autobiography entitled Real love: a life with BVB.
Cover picture: Martin Davidsen [CC BY 2.0], via Wikimedia Commons
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