Profiles: Who are the men behind the scenes at Oxford United?

Anindya Bakrie (left), Horst Geicke (centre) and Oxford United boss Karl Robinson. Picture: David Fleming
Anindya Bakrie (left), Horst Geicke (centre) and Oxford United boss Karl Robinson. Picture: David Fleming

OXFORD United have announced changes to their board, which has seen Indonesian investors Anindya Bakrie and Erick Thohir take a controlling 51 per cent stake in the U’s.

Here, we take a look at the key figures behind the scenes.

READ IN FULL: Oxford United announce Anindya Bakrie and Erick Thohir as new owners

  • Anindya Bakrie: A director since April 2019, he has longstanding links with Thohir through media and communications. He’s fronting the change of ownership.

  • Erick Thohir: A director between November 2018 and October 2019, but was always understood to have a background role. He was Inter Milan owner and president between 2013 and 2019, and previously the majority shareholder at DC United in the US. Background is in building stadia, and founder of media company Mahaka Media, which owns TV stations and newspapers. Member of International Olympic Committee and was forced to step down from the U’s when he was appointed Indonesia’s ‘state-owned enterprises minister’, which meant he had to relinquish board positions. He now officially returns to the board.

  • Grant Ferguson. The new chairman was formally appointed to the board in July, but had been working with the club behind the scenes for several months prior to that. On the board at Inter Milan from 2014 to 2017, when Thohir owned the club. Has held senior telecommunications positions across Asia.

  • Tim Williams. United have announced they hope to appoint Williams as chief executive, subject to EFL approval. He has previously served as chief financial officer at Inter Milan and group financial controller at Man Utd. Williams is a chartered accountant, a visiting professor at Manchester Metropolitan University Business School and sits on the advisory board of the MMU Institute of Sport.

  • Niall McWilliams. The managing director since December 2017 is to assume the role as chief strategy officer, while also serving as project director for United’s stadium move project.

  • Sumrith ‘Tiger’ Thanakarnjanasuth. The former chairman had been owner since February 2018, when he acquired a controlling stake from Darryl Eales. His proportion of shares have gradually reduced since then.

  • Horst Geicke. A director who joined in September 2018, among the first appointments made by Tiger. German businessman, based in Hong Kong. He remains on the board.