A Portuguese start-up hopes to help Manchester City connect with individual fans around the world.

Bbox Sports offers subscriptions to quarterly ‘mystery boxes’, costing €55, which contain official merchandise such as scarves and mugs as well as unique experiences such as meeting players and stadium tours.

It is working with Lisbon giants Benfica and recently attended the City Startup Challenge at the Etihad Stadium.

“We are looking to bring fans closer to the clubs: 10 per cent of the boxes will come with experiences such as seeing a game in a VIP chamber,” founder and CMO Dulce Guarda told BusinessCloud. “We work directly with the club in order to have those kind of experiences.

“Working with Man City for us is a really big experience because it's one of the major clubs in Europe. It also has a lot of connections with Brazil and the Portuguese markets that we want to explore.”

Bbox Sports is also partnering with Atletico Madrid in Spain and Juventus in Italy. Guarda says there is a unique opportunity to engage fans around the world with physical products.

“The engagement will allow the club to understand who their fans are – and where they are,” continued Guarda.

“How can they explore that relationship? Can they make them feel special all year long, not just on game days?

“It's a way for them to boost the sales of their products and get interesting, efficient data that will help them create new forms of monetisation.

“The fans that are really into a club are not those paying £7,000 for a one-off seat. It's those that are paying £500 regularly on shirts, tickets, beer. They are the fans that will support and love the club on a daily basis.

“Football is emotion, right? People want to feel connected with their club – and we help them do that.”

Bbox

She added: “In the USA, people are familiar with YouTubers ‘unboxing’ on their channels. You can also influence what is in your box by engaging with our app.

“And if you are a Man City fan, you love football too: if you are on holiday in Barcelona, for example, we would like to send you a notification to say ‘here's a last-minute ticket at a really good price’.”