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The TC Freisenbruch travels to China on 14 January 2019 and presents itself to the Asian trade visitors at the ISPO Beijing.
At TC Freisenbruch it is not the board or the coach who decides on the line-up, finances and transfers, but an online community with football fans from all over the world.
Before the trip to the Far East we talked to Gerrit Kremer, the managing director of the association.
The TC Freisenbruch travels to China in less than a week. What are your goals at the ISPO Bejing?
Gerrit Kremer: Basically, we have presented the TC Freisenbruch at numerous events throughout Germany, at trade fairs and congresses partly with our own stand, often also as a speaker in the lecture program.
In 2019, there will also be appearances in other European countries and the first appearance at the ISPO Beijing trade fair in Beijing at the beginning of 2019. The aim of these events is always to at least advertise the project and to draw more people's attention to TC Freisenbruch and its worldwide unique concept.
In addition, you get to talk to a lot of people, including potential partners and supporters. In Beijing, we want to try out entering the Chinese market in particular, which is not easy, because completely different online marketplaces and payment options are relevant there, among other things. Finally, China is of course a very interesting market for everyone, which is why several Bundesliga clubs try to get started there.
Chinese football fans are looking for just such a concept
Had the TC Freisenbruch ever had contact with the Far East?
Gerrit Kremer: Some months ago we actually had very intensive contact. It was reported about the TC Freisenbruch and its concept in the biggest Chinese football app.
There were several thousand comments within a few hours. By chance we were in Frankfurt for the "International Football Summit" on this day, where representatives of almost all German professional clubs as well as some top-class representatives from abroad also talked about China marketing.
There were also Chinese agencies present who organize the entry into the Chinese market for the professional clubs. When we showed them the contributions in the app, they were very surprised that there were such intense reactions that were consistently positive. Everyone has unanimously assured us that Chinese football fans find the same concept as we do in Freisenbruch to be very good and that we should soon endeavour to enter the Chinese market.
A few weeks later, the NRW Bank's China Forum also took place in Duisburg, where we participated with our own stand at the invitation of Business Metropole Ruhr. Also here it was very interesting that the findings from Frankfurt were confirmed again.
The German professional clubs are trying to gain a foothold in China, the TC Freisenbruch is now taking the first step. Isn't that a bit daring, for an amateur club?
Gerrit Kremer: What is already daring with TC Freisenbruch? Whoever creates such a concept as we do, must not close his eyes to almost all other ideas, even the craziest ones!
You don't stand out from the crowd by doing what everyone else does and what you've always done. In addition, the offer to go to Beijing with us has now also simply fitted well, in all respects.
If we had not received the invitation and the general conditions were right for us, we would certainly not have been active here at the present time, perhaps later. On the other hand, it would have been downright negligent to let such an opportunity go now. In addition, the concept of the TC Freisenbruch is also in the foreground. In contrast to the professional clubs, which only want to open up another source of money, the fans and online team managers from China also really get something offered by us.