Our philosophy

For the love of the game

Do you still remember your first match as a supporter? Putting on the shirt of your favourite player. Your mother putting the scarf with the right colors around your neck, fumbling gloves (with club logo of course) in your pockets and adding a hat to top it off (‘you know it’s cold in the stadium’).

The flag that flies heavily, tightly clamped between the window of the car. The traffic jam in the direction of the stadium and the bumpy ride to the right parking space. An exciting walk to the soccer temple, with the burger stall – ‘please with onion and ketchup, ma’am’ – as the last stop before getting in.

The sudden bending when the local striker shoots high during the warm up. The club song blasting through the speakers with a slight crack. The kop unfolding a massive tifo… and the jitters in your belly when the players enter the field at the same time.

But most of all… the first time “your” club scores. That someone you’ve never met before cheerfully embraces you,. That you listen to the euphoric analyses in the bar after the match, inspired by beer in plastic cups.

That feeling, to create that inimitable fan experience, that’s the reason for our existence. How do we achieve that? By supporting professional sports clubs in merchandising and brand activation.

Our history

Topfanz is the brainchild of Jo Appeltans and Gilles Van Doorne. A reconstruction of the origins of Topfanz, based on two life stories.

Jo Appeltans

Early 2000s
Jo Appeltans catches a microbe when he helps to boost the merchandising at his favourite club STVV.

Sjalleman comes into being. Local clubs can order their own scarves via this website. The passion for fan experience is contagious and the number of customers is growing rapidly.

Jo is fully committed becoming an entrepreneur. He quits his regular job (as a logistics specialist at a multinational) and manages to convince the first professional clubs. Sjalleman slowy moves into the direction of a one-stop-shop for fan articles.


Gilles Van Doorne

Gilles Van Doorne moves to London to work in the e-commerce industry.

In the run-up to the 2014 World Cup, Gilles will be looking online for fan articles from the Red Devils, the national team of Belgium. Yet, without success…

Inspired by this, Gilles founded Belgoshop: a webshop that focuses exclusively on the sale of fans’ items for Belgian football fans. Gilles becomes Jo’s client: this is how their path crosses for the first time.

Jo and Gilles are launching the Topfanz joint venture.

Topfanz expands its services: in addition to purchasing products and support in e-commerce, we also offer marketing advice. In addition, we are aiming at the (Western) European market, based on our experience as market leader in Belgium.


Warehouse manager



Project management


Marketing – Project management


Finance – Legal


Tom Claes

Operations Manager


Ready to take the fan experience to the next level at your club?