Dutch Sporting Goods Industry Association, FGHS

Netherlands: Utrecht
Dirk Vinken
64% completed


About us


FGHS is the Dutch industry association for sporting goods suppliers: sportswear,- shoes and -equipment in the broadest sense. FGHS currently has more than one hundred and forty members, who together represent 80% of the annual turnover of the industry. The FGHS is founded in 1950 and has offices in Leusden near Utrecht. OUR OBJECTIVE FGHS’ main objective is to be the center of knowledge, information and inspiration for the sporting goods industry. As such we organise seminars, workshops, trainings, events and meetings with and for our members, together with i.e. retail- and consumer organizations, sport associations, research institutes, universities, Dutch government , Dutch Olympic Committee and many other actors in the field. We also help and advise our mainly SME members to develop, expand and to grow their business, in the Netherlands and abroad by supporting them to find new markets. With our own “Innovation Coach” we stimulate our members to be innovative. We serve the interests and are the voice of our members by representing them in all kinds of forums, governmental departments and organizations and create a network. Nationally and internationally. The FGHS Academy offers skill trainings to our members, doing so we try to increase the knowledge and professionalism of our industry.

SUB-CLUSTERS FGHS is divided into sub- clusters. They represent different sectors of the sports industry. This makes it easier for members and stakeholders operating in the same sector to address common concerns and challenges and to develop joint activities. The FGHS has e.g. the following sections: Winter Hardware, Running, Tennis, Golf, Fitness, Hockey, Outdoor and Equestrian. These sub-clusters represent the specific sector. The sub-clusters identify trends and developments with regard to the specific sector (from public opinion, sectorial wishes to entrepreneurial qualities and innovations, from market information sharing , sustainability to retail trends) and act as a sounding board for the various organizations, events, studies and projects. The sub-clusters bring together all stakeholders, from primary entrepreneur to supplier, from media to universities, from branch association and sports association to sports retailers, students, experts, companies and athletes together and accelerate the development, market approach, knowledge and embrace new products and services. Sub-clusters also work with each other and by each other (crossovers). By joining forces, thus they increase the competitiveness of our member companies. Furthermore they make sports more sustainable and contribute to a future-proof sports economy.

CONNECTING PEOPLE FGHS and its sub-clusters are the linking pin and provide the network between members, private and public companies/ organizations, universities, sport associations, retail organizations, NGO’s, innovation centers, training institutes and local and national governments abroad and in the Netherlands. We also facilitate in- and outgoing business missions and organize matchmaking events. All these connecting activities support and contribute to identify and explore new business development opportunities for our members, helping them with their internationalization strategy and finding new partners.

Established - 01 November 1950
Staff in the management team - 1-5

Cluster composition

  • 160
    Cluster Members
  • 140
  • 5
    Number of start-ups among SME's
  • 5
    Large Companies
  • 4
    Research Organisations, Universities, Technology Centers
  • 0
    Number of civil society members
  • 6
    Other Ecosystem Actors

We organised several trade missions, workshops and matchmaking events. We participates in international exhibitions, we promote our network worldwide (also in Europe) and help companies with their international strategy. 

Legal form of the cluster organisation
Registered Association
Languages spoken
Dutch English French German

Management team

Dirk Vinken
Cluster Manager
Andrea Roumimper
Project Manager

Sectorial and industrial focus

Sectoral industries
Sectoral Industries (NACE 4 digit)
Cross-sectoral industries
Industrial Alliances and Ecosystems
Technology fields
S3 EU priority areas


Support services provided

Other (please specify)

Further information

EVERYTHING WE DO AND THE SERVICES WE PROVIDE In line with our current policy, we proactively provide the following range of support services: We advise our members on social, economic and legal issues and also provide other information; We alert them to business opportunities; We have a monthly e-newsletter with information about, or related to, our industry, share market information, invitations for seminars etc.; We organize company visits to companies from outside our industry and have the yearly “FGHS Inspiration Tour”; We have an excellent network of universities, research- and knowledge institutes, such as TNO, Fontys, HAS, TMO, Mulier Instituut, Kenniscentrum sport & bewegen We have close relationships with the key public sector actors involved in designing policy support mechanisms for our industry, e.g Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade, NL.inBusiness, Ministry of Health, Welfare and Sport, ZonMw We also regularly organise seminars, workshops, events, matchmaking events and trade missions with the support of national and regional development and export agencies, e.g. ; Netherlands Enterprise Agency, Brabant Sport We were and are also many times the host, as a representative of the industry, for foreign business missions (e.g. France, Australia and China), thus building many new relationships and opportunities for our members; We participate in boards of organizations, expert groups, advice panels and round tables for the sport sector; We have set up the FGHS Academy with key training institutes to ensure adequate skills development for our members ; We connect to innovation platforms to help companies access knowledge and become part of the Dutch sport innovation ecosystem. We are involved and have privileged relations with e.g. Sports & Technology, SportInnovator, Trendpanel Paard, InnoSportLab Sport & Beweeg We help our members connect with public and private sector, nationally and internationally, to improve their competitiveness; We issue general terms and conditions of sale and delivery in several languages and advise our members on how to apply these terms and conditions; We have negotiated preferential conditions with various other organizations. This means that our members are able to benefit from discounts on e.g. (credit) insurance, logistics/transport and legal support.

Support programmes

EU Programmes

Name & description

Innosport.eu; In 2006, organisations from the Sports industry, Sports and R&D organisations throughout the EU joined together in a European project, entitled the Innosport.eu initiative (www.innosport.eu). The results of the Innosport.eu project were summarised in a booklet “building a future of Europe Sports Innovation”. The end of the Innosport.eu project marked the start of the European Platform for Sport and Innovation, EPSI.EPSI was initiated from the Innosport.eu partners at the first European conference on Sports and Innovation in the spring of 2008.

Project name

Cooperation activities

International cooperation

Targeted countries

United Arab Emirates
United States

Transnational cooperation

Targeted countries


Transnational support activites

Participation at missions/events/study visits/fairs

International support activites

Participation at missions/events/study visits/fairs

Further information

We organised several trade missions and match making events. We participated in international exhibitions, we promote our network worldwide (also in Europe), we help companies with their international strategy. We also organise (nationally and internationally) testevents and knowledge transfers (workshops & seminars) for retail and endconsumers. Many times in cooperation with helix representatives.

Membership in cluster networks, meta clusters and national associations of clusters

Upcoming events

Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday Saturday Sunday

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