About the

European Handball Federation

The European Handball Federation is the governing body for handball in Europe. With 50 member federations and two associated federations, the EHF is responsible for a wide range of tasks and activities from promotion and development through to the organisation of high profile sports events. The EHF is affiliated to the International Handball Federation.

Founded in 1991, the EHF has its headquarters in Vienna, Austria, where both the federation and its marketing subsidiary, EHF Marketing GmbH, have their offices. The federation has an annual budget in excess of 25 million Euro.

The EHF is responsible for the organisation of major international sports competitions such as the EHF EURO and the EHF Champions League including top events including the VELUX EHF FINAL4 and Women’s EHF FINAL4.

Additionally, the federation is tasked with tasks including the promotion of the game, player transfers, referees and delegates, development and education programmes as well as newer versions of the game including beach handball, wheelchair handball and street handball.

EHF Business Report 2016 EHF Business Report 2015
History of the EHF
EHF Marketing GmbH

Formed on 1 July 2015, EHF Marketing GmbH is the marketing arm and a wholly owned subsidiary of the EHF. The company is responsible for the marketing and media rights of the federation’s club competitions including the VELUX EHF Champions League, Women’s EHF Champions League and Men’s EHF Cup.

The company works closely with marketing and media partners, as well as with Europe’s leading clubs, to realise the full potential of the sport on the international sports market. The EHFM team is also responsible for the organisation of each season’s final club events including the VELUX EHF FINAL4, Women’s EHF FINAL4 and EHF Cup Finals.

EHF Marketing GmbH
EHF Structure

The highest body of the federation, the EHF Congress, meets every two years, with the next Congress to take place in Glasgow in June 2018. The executive body is the EHF Executive Committee and it is responsible for decisions on key sports-political issues.

Congress elects the members of the technical commissions – Competitions, Methods and Beach Handball Commissions – whose chairs sit on the Executive Committee. It also elects the members of the various legal bodies including the Court of Handball, Court of Appeal and Court of Arbitration Council as well as the Comptrollers.

The interests of the sport’s various stakeholders including players, clubs, leagues and federations are represented through bodies including the Professional Handball Board, Nations Board and Women’s Handball Board.

The EHF Office provides the administration for all of the federation’s competitions and activities. Established in 1992 in Vienna, shortly after the formation of the EHF, the office now has a staff of more than 55 sports professionals from around 17 different European nations, working in areas that include event management, marketing, communications, IT, finances, education and development.

Competitions

The EHF oversees a busy calendar of events and competitions throughout the year from senior to youth level in indoor handball, beach handball and also wheelchair handball.

The federation’s flagship national team and club competitions include the EHF EURO events and the EHF Champions League.

EHF EURO events

The Men’s and Women’s EHF EURO events are organised biennially with men’s final tournaments taking place in January and the women’s events in December. 

The men’s and women’s events attract a huge global audience. In 2016, the Men’s EHF EURO was followed by a record TV audience of 1.65 billion people on TV and by over 400,000 spectators in arenas across the host nation, Poland.

From 2020, the men’s tournament will expand from 16 to 24 teams, it will be held in three countries and be the first to see the final matches played in front of 25,000 spectators in a football arena.

Official EHF EURO website Bidding for EHF EURO 2022/2024
EHF Champions League

Since its launch season, the EHF Champions League has grown and developed to become the premier club league in handball and one of the leading competitions on the international sports market.

The competition has been constantly evolving since it was established, with new formats and initiatives including the introduction of new technologies such as goal line cameras, instant replay and new camera angles including the referee cam.

In 2010, the VELUX Group joined the men’s competition as its first title sponsor and in the same year a change to the playing system saw the introduction of a final weekend – the VELUX EHF FINAL4. Played in Cologne’s LANXESS arena in front of a capacity crowd of 19,750, this mega sports and entertainment event has set a benchmark for indoor sports events in Europe.

A ‘FINAL4’ event was also added to the Women’s EHF Champions League in the 2013/14 season and to a relaunched Men’s EHF Cup in the 2012/13 season.

Official EHF Champions League website EHF FINAL4 events
Developing the sport

A key task for the EHF is the development of the sport and the people involved in delivering it whether they be coaches, officials or managers. The development work of the member federations is supported through a number of programmes including the SMART Project (time-limited, specific projects), Infrastructure Support Programme (financial and material support to build capacity and develop infrastructure) as well as the Foster Project (stronger handball countries supporting emerging nations).

Through the federation’s Competence Academy and Network (CAN), the EHF also offers education programmes and initiatives including Young Coaches Workshops, Goalcha Conference, Scientific Conference and coach licensing. The programme is extended to courses for club managers and in 2015 the ‘European Handball Manager’ was launched in conjunctions with the German Sports University. 

EHF Activities website
Anti-doping

In 2012, the EHF created the ‘EHF Anti-doping Unit’ to control and monitor its anti-doping programme and also educate athletes and raise awareness of anti-doping issues.

The EHF Anti-doping Unit is responsible for the arrangement and carrying out of controls, the development of awareness for non-intentional doping, the education and information process for young athletes, the coordination with national anti-doping agencies in Europe, the handling of therapeutic exemptions and further anti-doping measures.

All activities in connection with the foundation of the EHF Anti-Doping Unit were handled in a close coordination with the World Anti-doping Agency (WADA)/International Handball Federation (IHF) and were approved accordingly.

EHF Anti-doping unit
Get in touch

For further information on any aspect of the European Handball Federation’s work, please do not hesitate to contact a member of the EHF or EHF Marketing GmbH team at the EHF Office in Vienna:

Email - office@eurohandball.com
Phone - +43 1-80 151/0
Website - eurohandball.com