Champ is a Dutch startup that offers on-demand sports activities. The platform brings 11,000 activities from 3,500 providers together and provides athletes with a simple and flexible way to find and book sport activities. To ensure  sport fanatics with seamless payments for the activities  booked by  providers and retailers, Champ works together with Online Payment Platform.

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"The idea behind our platform is to remove as many barriers as possible with stimulating more people to get moving and practice sports. We want to play an active role in helping Dutch people to achieve the exercise standard," says Michiel Huisman, co-founder of Champ. Huisman's ambitions are high: "Within a few years, we want to get hundreds of thousands of people moving and be the starting point for any kind of sport, free or paid.

 

 

Easily try out different sports

Champ responds to both the trend of digitising different domains as well as the flexibility that people are looking for when practicing a sport. "Orientation for practicing sports starts online more often. In addition, people do not want to be tied to subscriptions and have the freedom to easily try different sports. Often, there is no solid knowledge about the available possibilities in the neighbourhood. We play a facilitating role in all these areas," says Huisman.

It is clear that the platform of Huisman and co-founder Paul Wiertz (both former owners of Couverts) is not simply a conduit for providers, but it provides added value for both parties. New products and services are being developed such as the ability to practice unlimited sports from different providers within an 8-week range, a passe partout and they also offer a combination of these subscriptions. Champ also offers a gift card through a retail network including Albert Heijn, Bruna, Kruidvat and Primera to give a sports experience as a present. Everything to make sports as easy, versatile and flexible as possible.

 

 

Payment provider that understands how a platform works

In order to facilitate payments as easy and reliable as possible, Huisman chose to collaborate with Online Payment Platform: "You are going to set up a critical business process, so you want full cooperation and contact with the providing party. For us, it was important to work with a payment provider that understands how a platform operates and why decide to organise things in a certain way.."

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"As a start-up, you look for companies with the same DNA. Because we came up with something new in a market that was new to us, with a new product, you want your partners to think along with us. We also talked to a few large parties, but you notice that the entrepreneurial spirit is definitely not lacking at Online Payment Platform. Hence, the choice to work with them came quickly."
 

 

Multi-Split Payments were Required

A hard requirement of Champ was the ability to perform multi-split payments. "This is important for the role of our platform," Huisman emphasizes.

"Imagine that someone buys a class at a bootcamp club. The payment is then initiated from iDEAL to Online Payment Platform and Champ automatically receives the agreed percentage of the transaction. So the transaction is not in our reach. A very positive aspect about this is that we don't have to act in case of a cancellation. Despite the fact that there are at least three parties involved in the process, it is very easy to reverse transactions. Organising those different directions of payment flows and providing transparency regarding incoming and outgoing payments is one of Online Payment Platform's specialties."

 

 

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Small scale and approachable

The choice of Online Payment Platform is working out very well for Champ in practice. "During the onboarding process we saw them going an extra mile to make it easy for us. It is a Dutch company that works with local people for both implementation and support. This makes them very approachable. You are not just left alone in the dark with a API documentation that you have to figure out on your own. Our developer worked closely together with Online Payment Platform to design the set-up in the best way possible for us, both in technical and also in terms of governance. Since we work with retailers also, our payment system is not simply black & white. It's nice when a party has trust to follow the stream."

The next step for Champ is to further improve the professional outlook of the platform, add new providers and of course grow the number of users. "Wherever you can book a zoo, airline ticket or hotel stay, we also want to position sports from an experience perspective. Together with our retail partners, we will focus on strong campaigns. It is reassuring to know that our payments are very well set-up with Online Payment Platform. From that point on, we are ready to further conquer the Netherlands," said Huisman.

 

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