The B2B and B2C growth of Excelsior Rotterdam

Wouter Gudde - Commercial Director at SBV Excelsior Rotterdam - shared insights on the the B2B and B2C growth of Excelsior Rotterdam at the ESSMA Summit in Porto.


A brief overview of the situation and challenges the club was facing in the 2012/13 season:

  • 3,500 stadium capacity 
  • 400 business seats
  • 130 Excelsior Business Club Members with a limited reach
  • Need for new hospitality features and VIP fan entertainment
  • Annual revenue from B2B operations: €1,1 million
  • 64% average attendance with 950 season ticket holders

The club felt that they had to make changes and improve their B2B and B2C operations to better support their sustainable growth. Step one in the process was to create an open dialogue with their sponsors regarding the Excelsior Business Club and their expectations. 

With the feedback, Excelsior Rotterdam developed a plan to enhance their B2B operations with a focus on the Excelsior Business Club and its potential as a networking and business platform with exclusive activities. In addition, the club also upgraded their hospitality facilities and introduced matchday activities for Excelsior Business Club members, for example a pop-up restaurant or a quiz.

In the 2014/15 and 2016/17 seasons Excelsior Rotterdam won the Eredivisie Sponsor Award for their efforts in growing their Business Club into a platform with national reach and over 300 members.


Concerning B2C operations, Excelsior Rotterdam implemented a targeted marketing campaign to increase the average attendance. They launched dedicated promotional campaigns with target audiences including families, students, youngsters, sports associations and attendees of CSR programmes.

Current situation and future plans

Excelsior Rotterdam has increased the capacity of their Van Donge & De Roo Stadium from 3,500 to 4,400 with an average attendance of 95% in the 2017/18 season. Their business club also grew to over 300 members.

In addition, Excelsior Rotterdam has plans to (re)develop their Van Donge & De Roo Stadium in the near future. The project focuses on offering their fans an improved matchday experience as well as an increase in revenue regarding matchday, non-matchday and real estate.

Main takeaways:

  • A well-organised and active business club can support the sustainable growth of a club.
  • If you want to (re)develop (a part of) your stadium, you have to listen to the fans who use that part of the stadium.
  • Unique events such as a quiz or pop-up restaurant can be a good way to surprise your hospitality guests.
  • Marketing campaigns aimed at raising the average attendance should be well-thought out and targeted to a certain audience.

Go to our ESSMA Flickr account for more pictures.

Access his presentation on the ESSMA Knowledge Platform