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Meet the team

Get in touch with our team: [email protected]


Rob Mitchell, Commercial Director

Rob joined the club over 12 years ago bringing his previous experience of the commercial side of the sport to a then League Two side.

A meteoric rise for both the club and commercial department saw the Cherries reach the Premier League in 2015, a level which was sustained for five years.

Currently operating in the Premier League, Rob leads the commercial team in securing partnerships, creating engaging marketing activations, and managing partner relations.

As well as his commercial role, Rob is also the founder of our free-to-join business club, The Net. The club’s regular events give opportunity to like-minded businesspeople to network and socialise in order to strengthen the local and regional business community.

You can hear more from Rob by reading his blog interview with The Net here.

Connect with Rob on LinkedIn.

Amy Marks, Strategic Partnerships Manager

The day-to-day management of partnerships falls to Amy Marks. Having been at the club for seven years, Amy has built strong relationships with our partners which has contributed to a 95% renewal rate each season.

Demonstrating our core values of honesty, integrity, and community, she is responsible for managing partnership activations, liaising with partners and ensuring that rights are delivered in line with partner objectives. 

If you’d like to hear more about Amy and her role, click here to read her blog interview with The Net.

Connect with Amy on LinkedIn.

Brian Benjafield, Commercial Executive

Brian, or Benji to his close associates, has a wealth of experience in sport business, having led commercial operations at Dorchester Town for over 15 years before joining the Cherries in 2009.

Brian is responsible for securing partnerships and commercial sales. Working closely with Rob and Amy, he works tirelessly for his clients, ensuring that their objectives are achieved and where possible, going above and beyond to exceed expectations.

Katie Smith, Global Partnerships Executive 

Katie joined the club in May 2022, having graduated with a degree in Sport Management from Bournemouth University, the club’s higher education partner.

Her role is Strategic Partnership Executive, where she helps ensure the requirements of club partners are met on a daily basis.

While also attending The Net events along with the commercial team, Katie manages the relationships of these club partners, organising and delivering their campaigns with the assistance of the media and marketing departments.

Connect with Katie on LinkedIn. 

Charlotte Jones, Commercial & Partnerships Executive  

Having joined the club in September 2022, Charlotte has a prominent role within our growing commercial department.

She graduated from Bournemouth University with a degree in Sport Management in May 2022, and oversees our The Net club partners.

Charlotte is responsible for mascot packages, while she also helps run The Net alongside Katie.

The Net is AFC Bournemouth’s free-to-join business club, which holds events for all partners and local personnel. Get in touch with Charlotte to enquire about our business club.  

Connect with Charlotte on LinkedIn. 

James Derella, Vice President of Global Partnership Activation

James joined AFC Bournemouth in April 2022, moving to the UK from Las Vegas. He previously held the position of Director, Global Partnership Activation for the Vegas Golden Knights, which is also under Bill Foley’s ownership.

At Vitality Stadium, he heads up the partnership activation team, ensuring that all partner rights are delivered in line with their objectives.

Connect with James on LinkedIn.

Mike Classen, Global Partnerships Sales Manager

Mike joined the commercial team in August 2023, having previously worked as the Head of Business Development at Virgin Experience Days.

He works closely with Rob and the wider partnership sales team to successfully execute the club’s global partner acquisition strategy.

As part of his role, Mike is responsible for the acquisition of new international strategic partners.

Connect with Mike on LinkedIn.

Sam McIntyre, Partnership Sales Manager

Along with Mike, Sam joined the club in August 2023 and is responsible for the acquisition of new strategic partners. He helps deliver significant commercial growth to the club.

Prior to joining the Cherries, he worked for Exeter Chiefs Rugby Club as Sales and Account Manager.

Connect with Sam on LinkedIn.

Lawrence Bisgrove, Global Partnerships Manager

Lawrence graduated from Oxford Brookes University in 2020 with a BA Honours degree in Business and Marketing Management.

He then worked for a London-based Sports Marketing Agency as a Partnerships Strategist, before joining Portsmouth FC in January 2022.

Lawrence obtained the role of Partnerships Manager, which saw him responsible for onboarding and managing a portfolio of over 20 partners.

Having joined AFC Bournemouth in 2023 as Global Partnerships Manager, he will manage the day-to-day relationships with club partners, collaborating with their teams to build campaign strategies of club partnerships.

Connect with Lawrence on LinkedIn.

Rob Lees, Global Partnerships Sales Manager

Rob joined AFC Bournemouth as a Global Partnerships Sales Manager, with the aim of acquiring new global partners for the club.

Rob has a wealth of experience in sport having joined from Rugby Union, where he spent three years. Prior to that, Rob worked in commercial roles at UEFA Euro 2020, The O2 Arena and Oxford United Football Club.

Connect with Rob on LinkedIn.

To understand how the team operate within our commercial philosophy, click here.

If you have an enquiry for our commercial team, please email [email protected].

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