The new Sector7 Managing Director Sebastian Blecke talks about new challenges, Berlin‘s urban development and sporting goals
Mr Blecke, what made you switch from GSG Berlin to the Sector7 Management Board?
I am now 47 years old and was COO at GSG Berlin for more than 11 years. I thought it was time to set a different course and look for a new challenge. GSG Berlin was mainly about conservation. Sector7, on the other hand, with its content- and user-driven project development, has a high level of dynamism and a wide range of innovative projects to offer. For me, this is an opportunity to get more involved as an entrepreneur in the development of new sustainable properties in the future – an exciting and important task that I am very much looking forward to.
Your focus will be on projects in the capital region. What connects you personally with Berlin and Brandenburg?
Well, first of all, I was born in Berlin – that’s a real USP in a city where people come from all over. But in addition to my strong emotional ties to the city and its environs, I naturally also bring with me a good network in all districts from my time at GSG Berlin. Whether politics, administration, competitors or potential users, I know many people here who are glad that I remain in the region as a reliable partner, even if on a somewhat different playing field.
Both Berlin and its immediate surroundings have recently experienced tremendous changes. How do you assess the development of the region?
The face of the city has changed a lot in the last 20 years and unfortunately not always for the better. In fact, I am a little disappointed sometimes, especially in some of the major projects. Architecturally, the buildings were often not very innovative and rather boring. In some places, the city has missed the opportunity to show more courage. Yet Berlin usually cultivates this cool image. I am all the more pleased that Sector7 is being bold with its concepts and breaking exciting new ground. As far as the general development of the region is concerned, in the wake of pandemic, war and recession, we naturally see dark clouds on the horizon at the moment. But experience shows that Berlin always gets through crises very well. In this respect, I am convinced that the run will continue and the city will continue to grow.
Speaking of “run”: You are known for always pursuing ambitious goals in sports alongside your professional life. You are taking part in the IRONMAN competition in Hawaii 2023. How do you combine both worlds?
That takes a bit of self-discipline: I regularly go swimming for an hour before work and running or cycling for an hour after work. And after Expo Real, I went straight to the start line of the Munich Marathon. That was the end of my season this year. For the coming year, I am registered or qualified for so many competitions that it would be enough for a lifetime, including classics like the long-distance triathlon in Roth, Franconia. Another highlight will be the World Championship at the half IRONMAN distance in Lahti, Finland and of course the legendary IRONMAN in Hawaii, in which I will participate for the second time after 2015. I certainly won’t win there in my age group because of the climate. My goal is to achieve a time under 10 hours despite the tough conditions. Ironman in Hawaii is like the Olympic Games – the most important thing is taking part.