Chris Robb is the CEO of Mass Participation Asia and author of ‘Mass Participation Sports Events – unlock the secrets to this complex and exciting industry’. Born in Zimbabwe where he grew up on a farm, Chris organized his first fun run at the age of 16 to help raise funds for the resurfacing of his school “cinder” athletics track. From there, he moved to University in South Africa where he cut his teeth in the industry and spent as much time organising and working on events, like the world famous Comrades Marathon and South African Marathon Championships as he did studying for his Bachelor of Commerce and Bachelor of Agricultural Management Degrees. After leaving university, he spent four years travelling through Europe, America, Asia and Australia before settling in Sydney in 1989 where he founded Spectrum Worldwide. One of his career highlights came in the year 2000 when Chris worked on the Sydney Olympics as the Road Events Supervisor. In 2002, he expanded the business to Singapore to deliver the inaugural JP Morgan Corporate Challenge. Spectrum Worldwide went on to deliver some of the region’s largest mass participation sports events including the Standard Chartered Marathon Singapore (55,000) runners and the Cycle Asia network of events that attracts nearly 25,000 cyclists to events in Singapore, Malaysia, Philippines and Australia.
Spectrum Worldwide was sold to IRONMAN in 2016 after which Chris assumed the role of CEO at Mass Participation Asia, an annual conference for stakeholders across the industry to get together with the objective of fostering collaboration and driving best practices. Chris is passionate about all sports, especially cycling and running and the fact that he has taken part in so many events as a participant gives him a unique insight into what his customers want. He also takes pride in that he has seen over a million participants cross the finish line safely in his career. There are very few people with Chris’s depth and breadth of knowledge in the mass participation sports industry. He lives in Bali with his wife Tet and son Sam.