As part of our ongoing "Getting to Know Your Local Businesses"
series, this week we sat down with Deb Keller, President of Inter Woodlands FC Soccer Club.
Tell us a bit about your business: What does your business offer, and how long have you been around? Inter Woodlands FC is a soccer club for players ages 4-19. We offer licensed professional training at every age level and develop each player’s abilities through small-sided games (the more touches on the ball, the better you get at it). The non-profit club has an international play style and has been in existence for 14 years.
How did you decide to get involved in this line of work? How did the business get started?
We came from Switzerland where soccer is huge. My kids could kick a ball as soon as they could walk. The club has given them opportunities that brought them to the Regionals of the Olympic Development program. We do it for love of the game and for the joy of bringing these opportunities to as many players as possible in our community.
Tell us a couple things you are proud of about your business. What are you known for? What separates you from the competition?
I’m extremely proud that: 1) Our club offers licensed professional trainers at every age level--not parent coaches 2) our club is an official soccer organization under TYSA, STYSA, USSF, and FIFA 3) we charge reasonable prices for training and uniforms 4) We offer financial aid programs for players and parents so every player can play and 5) every participant in our program is a valued member of the program--not just the ones that regularly score goals. (After all it’s a team sport, right?)
What is your favorite part of running this business?
We’ve seen players become life-long friends. We’ve been told by a few players that if it weren’t for soccer they would be getting into trouble—one admitting that he stopped doing drugs to play. We’ve seen players become referees, gaining leadership skills and earn money for college. Oh yeah, and smiles, high-fives, and goals on the field of course!
Who is your ideal customer/client? Who do you serve best?
Male and female soccer players ages 4-19 who love the game ideally. We know that high school players have district matches so our program wraps around their season so there’s no overlap. We have a referee shortage right now, so we welcome anyone interested in becoming a referee.
Can you tell us something about yourself as the business owner? What is your background?
My studies in international business gave me the opportunity to live and work in Italy and in Switzerland for 14 years. I’m also supply chain consultant for Oil & Gas, Chemical and IT companies. I speak several languages. The INTERnational culture of The Woodlands is why we named the club INTER WOODLANDS.
Are there any special promotions, annual sales, or special events that you'd like to mention?
Absolutely! We offer every player an opportunity to try the program for a week for free! Just show up a few minutes before practice and introduce yourself!
Is there any other information you'd like your potential customers/clients to know about your business?
Values are important. We are not here for the money. We are here for players and their families. We believe in strong, honest competition but are not interested in unfair advantage or “win at all costs”. Doing the right thing and respect for others are important to us. Learning those values on the field are key to players reaching their GOALS later in life—on an off the field.
To learn more about Inter Woodlands FC, visit their profile on TheWoodlandsTX.com
. To find more information and register for a free week trial, visit their website
. You may also contact Coach Leo with questions at 669-237-9172 or [email protected]