Hans is Professor of International Sport Business, Head of the Sport Business Insights Group and also a Director of PASI (Physical Activity and Sport Insights) at Victoria University (VU) in Melbourne, Australia. He was the Founding Director of the Institute of Sport, Exercise and Active Living (ISEAL, now the Institute for Health and Sport - IHeS). He is the Specialty Chief Editor (management, marketing and business) at Frontiers in Sports and Active Living, an advisory board member of the Dutch Sports Council (NLSportraad), a scientific advisory board member at GOfit in Spain, and an advisor to the Varcis Group in Hong Kong. Hans was a co-founder of both the European Association for Sport Management (EASM) and the Sport Management Association of Australia and New Zealand (SMAANZ). He was also a founding board member of AFL Europe based out of London. In Melbourne he is a Director at the Emerald Hill Mission charity.
Hans’s career in international sport business really started in 1987 when he became a tennis coach at Strong River Camp in Pinola, Mississippi, USA. Having just finished a degree in physical education in the Netherlands - his country of birth - the fascination with international sport started with that sojourn to America. The differential popularity of sport between nations, the various delivery systems, the social contexts in which sport is played, and different stages of commercial development all became topics of investigation. In 1991 he was part of a group of entrepreneurs who established the ‘Sport Management Institute’, an organisation that developed and delivered the first ever graduate level sport management program in the Netherlands. He moved to Australia in 1994 where he completed an MBA and then wrote his PhD thesis on cross-cultural differences in services marketing, where he compared the football stadium experiences of supporters in the USA, the Netherlands, Malaysia and Australia. In 1997 he published his first book.
‘Strategic Sport Marketing’ was the first of many books to come - 28 to date - and with more than 250 academic and popular science writings under his belt, Hans has become a thought leader and senior consultant in the business of sport internationally. He has consulted to more than 70 international sport organisations including FIFA, Cricket Australia, the International Tennis Federation (ITF), IMG (London), the Dutch Royal Football Association (KNVB), the European Volleyball Federation (CEV), the Saujana Group (Malaysia), LA Galaxy (USA) and the Al Jazira Sport and Cultural Club (UAE). He has also been employed by various governments including India, the Netherlands, Portugal, New Zealand, Australia, Belgium, and China. As a member of various government organised sport industry delegations, Hans has represented the Dutch and Australian governments on missions to Brazil, South Africa, Finland, the USA, India, China and Japan.