Bill Sweeney appointed new RFU chief executive

Bill Sweeney (left) and Sir Hugh Robertson discuss Rio 2016 success Photo by Nick Ansell/PA Images via Getty Images

Bill Sweeney has been appointed the new chief executive officer of the England Rugby Football Union (RFU), the governing body confirmed on Tuesday.

Sweeney, who has been the head of the British Olympic Association (BOA) since 2013, will replace Steve Brown, who resigned from his position last November.

During his tenure at the BOA, Team GB enjoyed a record breaking Olympics in London 2012, followed by becoming the first nation to win more medals in Rio 2016.

Team GB also delivered their best ever performances at two consecutive Winter Olympic Games.

"I leave behind a very strong British Olympic Association, both financially and in readiness for Tokyo 2020," Sweeney said in a statement. "This is the only opportunity that I would have left the BOA for. From the grassroots game to our England teams, rugby's values and opportunities are very special.

"I am passionate about the game and it is an honour to be joining the RFU team."

Before joining the BOA, Sweeney had a successful business career with senior roles in sports businesses including Adidas and Puma, as well as corporate management experience with Shell, Mars and Unilever.

"We are delighted to announce Bill's appointment as CEO," said RFU chairman Andy Cosslett. "He brings a rare combination of experience from the worlds of blue chip business and elite sport and has a tremendous track record in both. His passion for the game is deep rooted and this will stand him in very good stead."

Nigel Melville will continue as Interim Chief Executive until Bill Sweeney commences his role at Twickenham.