Interview with Eric M. Gottschalk, CEO of MMC Sportz

Interview with Eric M. Gottschalk, CEO of MMC Sportz

The Business of Football (TBOF) regional conference returns to Manila for its second edition on 10 November 2023. TBOF is staged by leading Asian sports marketing and communication solutions provider, MMC Sportz, at Manila’s Raffles Makati and boasts LaLiga as one of its key partners.

The only Southeast Asian football-dedicated industry conference that brings together the key stakeholders of the industry, this one-day event anticipates over 200 delegates and 20+ regional and international speakers.

TBOF 2023 Official Media Partner, Asia Sponsorship News (ASN), caught up with MMC Sportz CEO, Eric M. Gottschalk, to find out what TBOF is all about.

ASN: What is TBOF?

ERIC M. GOTTSCHALK: The Business of Football, sanctioned by the Philippines Football Federation (PFF), is a premier one-day football conference bringing together the key stakeholders of the regional and local football community from federations, clubs, academies, rights holders, agencies, brands, media, and fans, discussing the current state and future development of the game in Southeast Asia.

After the very successful inaugural event in 2018, we felt now is the right time to stage the second edition and to review and highlight key milestones that the Asian football community has experienced over the past few years, which include hosting and participating in two FIFA World Cups.

ASN: Why Manila?

ERIC M. GOTTSCHALK: The Philippines is a unique location because – not only is it spread across some 7,000 islands – but also because football is not the #1 sport, as it is in almost all other Southeast Asian countries. While the PFF is struggling to make the sport more popular, the national teams have had major successes in recent years with the Azkals qualifying for the Asia Cup and the Women’s National Team playing in the 2023 FIFA Women’s World Cup

So, I feel this is a good time to speak about football development and ‘The Business of Football’ because resources are needed to further grow the game – not only in the Philippines but all over Southeast Asia. Our regional and international speakers will be able to trigger some lively discussions that will be valuable take-aways and represent knowledge transfer for the local football stakeholders as well as the regional representatives.

And then, of course, there is the Filipino hospitality and cuisine – which alone makes it worth a trip to attend the event for anyone who has not been there

ASN: What’s special about TBOF 2023?

ERIC M. GOTTSCHALK: This year’s event has lined up a great variety of speakers, from representatives of New Zealand Football Association – letting us re-live the successful staging of the 2023 FIFA Women’s World Cup – to valuable presentations by some of the leading tech providers. They will showcase how to open new revenue streams for rights holders as well as demonstrate how fan activation has changed and how to become more successful and engaging through the application of technology.

TBOF is a data-driven event. We will talk about the industry in general, showcasing statistics, for example, on sponsorship spend and investments in football in Asia. Our partnership with ASN gives us direct access to your statistics and analysis, including the ‘ASN Football Asia Market Analysis 2023’, which will be released at the conference.

And then there is the recognition element of the conference:  we believe it is important to recognise excellence in football and this is no different at TBOF 2023. We will award our token of appreciation to some of the outstanding projects and initiatives conducted in the region during the conference.

ASN: Can you share some of the key highlights we can expect from TBOF 2023?

ERIC M. GOTTSCHALK: Our partners from LALIGA, Blocksport, and ASN will be key contributors to the conference agenda, with some of the following topics spanning the breadth of the football industry:

  • Asian Trends in football sponsorship and investment
  • What’s next for Philippines football? PFF presidential elections & clubs participating in AFC competitions
  • FIFA Women’s World Cup review and the impact of the 2023 FIFA Women’s World Cup on football development in Southeast Asia
  • Asian trends in social media, AI, big data, and ecommerce in professional sports
  • Use of blockchain technologies for successful fan activations and revenue generation
  • Learnings for regional football from the FIBA World Cup hosting in the Philippines, Japan, and Malaysia
  • TBOF awards AND recognitions of key industry contributors

And with this in mind, TBOF 2023 in the Philippines might just be the accelerator for more events in the region. The sports industry has plenty of room for development, including the creation of more opportunities for education, knowledge transfer, and networking.

ASN: Why should we attend?

ERIC M. GOTTSCHALK: Again, this is the only football-centred industry conference in Southeast Asia. It is packed with valuable content for learning and further development, as well as offering great networking opportunities. Many delegates will arrive in Manila for the first time and TBOF affords the chance to make new connections across the rights holder and brand landscape in the Philippines.

Let’s not forget, this is a very developed market when it comes to hosting large sporting events. The country staged the 2019 Southeast Asian Games, with over 10,0000 athletes, as well as the recently completed FIBA World Cup which had record-breaking attendances. For the local delegates, this is an opportunity to rub elbows and connect with some of the most experienced industry experts from abroad.

ASN: How can we sign up to attend?

ERIC M. GOTTSCHALK: To reserve tickets, please visit the website at: or email us at

The delegate pass for ₱ 2,850.00 incl. VAT (US$50.00) includes access to all sessions, networking breaks, and the conference buffet lunch. Displayed rates are exclusive of the ₱100 Convenience Fee for Debit Card, Credit Card, and PayPal payments.

Asia Sponsorship News (ASN) is pleased to join The Business of Football (TBOF) on 10 November 2023 at the Raffles Makati, Manila, Philippines as the Official Media Partner and we extend to ASN premium subscribers a 25% discount off delegate passes using the following promo code: BOT25


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