The amateur club Emmen was formed on August 21, 1925. When the Dutch professional league was formed in 1954,Emmen opted to maintain its amateur club status instead.
In 1985, Emmen finally joined the professional ranks. In 1988 the club was split up in an amateur and a professional section. The latter was mostly called BVO Emmen ( Betaald Voetbal Organisatie, professional football organisation). In 2005, the professional club Emmen changed its name into FC Emmen, for two reasons. Firstly, it was hoped that the new name would better reflect the club's history, and secondly because many misunderstandings had arisen, among people who had grown to believe that BVO was an abbreviation similar to for instance PSV, RBC or ADO.