RBFA launches own annual international sports marketing event: Football Marketing Forum 2022

Roberto Martinez opens first edition of FMF with The Coca-Cola Company chief executive Jan Schetters, among others

The Royal Belgian Football Association is organizing its first edition of the Football Marketing Forum on Tuesday, October 4, 2022, with this year's slogan ‘Winning hearts & minds through sponsorship’. This international event aims to bring together the cream of the Belgian and European business community and several sports marketing experts with representatives from the Belgian soccer clubs, but also from other soccer federations and other sports. "Our men’s national football team is among the top in the world, but as a federation, we also want to play our pioneering role. With this event, we want to inspire the Belgian sports world and provide insight into the latest sports marketing trends", says Manu Leroy, Director Marketing & Communications of the RBFA.  

Modern soccer is much more than bringing together a team of players who can kick a ball well together. In addition to classic ticket or jersey sales, revenue generation through marketing in inventive ways and certainly through well-chosen sponsor partnerships has become an essential part of soccer. The Royal Belgian Football Association, driven in part by the top performances of the Belgian Red Devils over the past decade, also wants to take a leading role off the field. Therefore, within the mission of the RBFA Knowledge Centre, the Belgian federation is the first to create its own annual sports marketing event with international speakers. ​ 

"The ambition of our Knowledge Centre is to create football-related academic expertise, but also to share both sporting, economic and social know-how and new insights to empower our Belgian clubs. With that in mind, we are organizing the first edition of the Football Marketing Forum in the fall, with a strong focus this year on sports sponsorship. That world is in full change, partly due to digital developments, and we hope to bring a lot of people together and inspire them at this event."  - Matteo Balliauw, coordinator of the RBFA Knowledge Centre ​ 

Panel discussions and speeches 

For the first edition, the RBFA provides a whole day full of interesting speakers. Jan Schettens, Director Global Sports Partnerships & Operations of The Coca-Cola Company, will fly over from the American headquarters in Atlanta to give his vision on the future of sports sponsorship. FC Barcelona is also present, as is Mark Versteegen, Director of Sponsoring and Most Beautiful Contact Fund at KPN (sponsor of the Eredivisie, KNVB and FC Most Beautiful Contact). For the RBFA, Manu Leroy and national coach Roberto Martinez will highlight the path that the football association has taken in terms of marketing with the Belgian Red Devils and the Red Flames. In the coming days and weeks, many other names will join the programme. 

"In addition, we will have speakers and panel discussions on the evolution of sports sponsorship in women's soccer, representatives from one or more of the top soccer clubs in the world to share their best practices and themes such as community projects will also be discussed. In addition to the keynotes and panel discussions, we will also provide networking opportunities, and thanks to Coca-Cola, FIFA will lend us the official World Cup Trophy, along with a former top footballer who won the World Cup himself. With the Football Marketing Forum, we really want to fulfill our role in the football ecosystem and bring together the business world, the academic world as well as the sports clubs and national federations." - Manu Leroy of the RBFA 

Those wishing to learn more about the Football Marketing Forum and see the program can visit www.rbfa.be/fmf22. The entrance fee for the event is €295.00 excluding VAT, and includes the welcome breakfast, lunch, coffee breaks and the closing cocktail. Seating is limited to a maximum of 200 participants. ​ 

Pierre Cornez

Press Officer RBFA

Ken Standaert

Ken Standaert

Team Lead/Senior PR Consultant Bepublic Group


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