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International Sports Business

International Sports Business

Sports connect and engage athletes, teams, fans and businesses. Sports fascinate and inspire. That is why the sport business is a very interesting industry, also from a commercial point of view. Are you passionate about sports, media & marketing? Is it your dream to work in a marketing or media job in the international world of sports?

The new minor International Sports Business will give you a head start into this field. It offers students with a suitable background* and a passion for sports the best of our Sports Marketing and Sports Communication Bachelors at the Fontys University of Applied Sciences in Tilburg, the Netherlands.

About this minor

This unique minor helps you become a sport marketing & communication professional. It offers you specialized knowledge and skills in fields such as sponsoring, (social) media,  (fan) marketing, communication, and managing big sports events. You will work in multidisciplinary and multicultural teams on real life assignments. Some key words are: fan engagement (how to understand and involve your fans), data analysis, fan behavior, the role of mega events in city marketing,  social media strategies, conversation management and media production.

In this minor we try to see organizations in the sport business as a part of an ecosystem which goal it is to create value for active participants and fans. In addition to that, our Personal Branding program will help you develop a range of professional (research, consulting, media design, presentation) skills. Team up with our lecturers, specialists in the various disciplines, with valuable professional experience and connections. Join our network of (international) sports companies, clubs and media organizations!



Introduction in sports marketing

This course aims to introduce students to commoditization of sport and helps students understand the intersect between commercial, political and social benefits to sport. The unit provides a general background to the history of international sport and the evolving role it plays. Students will analyse evolving opportunities for sport as a means of marketing and comprehend and apply the principles of marketing for using sport for commercial and entertainment value.

Introduction in sport sponsoring

Sport sponsoring is well and truly a phenomenon of modern sports. Sponsoring deals are a powerful marketing and communication tool for brands, which enables even more developments and commercial opportunities for professional as well as recreational sports. In this course, students look at sport sponsoring especially from the sponsor point of view, and will learn more on sponsoring processes, matching models and sponsoring activation.

Introduction in sport marketing communications

The central subject of this course is integrated marketing communication. After an introduction into marketing communication we will cover all elements of the marketing communication plan within the international sport context. Students will be able to use these elements in order to develop an integrated marketing communication plan.

Changes in sport media

The world is rapidly changing in terms of owned, earned and paid media in the world of sports. This course gives student insights on recent trends and developments in (social) media, more specifically within the sports organization that produces its own media. 



Project 1 Fan Engagement

Fan engagement is an important theme within the sport business. Students learn about the social and psychological processes that influence the level of engagement of a fan. Data analysis is used to get a better understanding of fan behavior. Fan based marketing and communication is used to reach the fans and increase their engagement with the club. Students will, in teams, advise a well-known football club on how to engage their fans.

Project 2 Mega Sports Events

Cycling is a very popular sport in this part of Europe. In this project students will learn about the impact and power of cycling in a professional as well as recreational context. Students will gain knowledge on the process of international sport events and how to use these to reach commercial goals from different perspectives, such as city marketing and sponsoring. In small teams, students will develop a bidbook with a concept for an international event and finding suitable business partners.

Project 3 Conversation Management

In this project, students will develop social media strategies and produce accompanying social media products for an international sports channel or programme. Students gain insights on how to build a relationship between sport fans and media companies by using conversation management. They can develop their ideas into different digital visuals by using media production skills.

Personal Branding

Our students will not only work on real-life projects and gain new knowledge, but they will also develop themselves personally and professionally. Every student is unique and has his own talents and ambitions. We coach our students to find theirs and to excel even further in order to reach their goals. Students will also explore their future work field, will get more experience, and they will broaden their networks. They need to build a personal branding portfolio on which they will reflect in an assessment.


Applications should always be submitted via We would like to receive a motivational letter in English, in which the following questions will be answered:
◾Who are you?
◾Why are your strenghts?
◾What are your ambitions?
◾Why are you applying for the minor International Sport Business?

You will also have to  send in a certificate or reference letter from your institute, in which it is stated that you have a minimum level of B2 (or similar) in English.


Deadline for applying: December 13th 2019

Due to the limited number of places available a selection will be done after the application deadline. A Skype conversation might be part of the selection process. Fontys School of Economics has the right to decline a student based on motivation or level of English. Students will be advised of their acceptance or refusal within 5 working days after their application.


Practical Information

Duration: 20 weeks

Contact hours: 15-20 per week

Credits: 30 ECTS

Period: February 10th 2020 – July 10th 2020

Location: Tilburg Language: English  



Contact person: Kris Tan –


The propaedeutic year must have been achieved


Students will be examined by written exams, portfolios, presentations and assessments