Frisco, TX / Columbus, OH (December 5, 2022) – Pro Volleyball Federation on Monday announced that DP Fox Sports & Entertainment and its chairman Dan DeVos will own and operate a team in Grand Rapids, MI, during the league’s 2024 inaugural season. Monday’s news marks the first publicly announced team ownership group for Pro Volleyball Federation. DeVos and his family also own the NBA’s Orlando Magic and the AHL’s Grand Rapids Griffins, and DeVos is a limited partner of Major League Baseball’s Chicago Cubs.
The Grand Rapids team will play in Van Andel Arena as a member of the newly formed Pro Volleyball Federation, America’s premier women’s professional volleyball league. The historic announcement was made during a morning press conference attended by DP Fox and Griffins executives, along with a number of Pro Volleyball Federation executives, local Grand Rapids government officials and business leaders, and local volleyball coaches and athletes.
A media market of nearly 2 million people — ahead of markets such as Jacksonville, Oklahoma City, Louisville, New Orleans, and Memphis — Grand Rapids is Michigan’s fastest growing metro area and one of the fastest growing cities in the United States. In 2017, various sources ranked Grand Rapids No. 1 for the fastest growing big-city economy in the U.S., No. 1 for job growth, and No. 1 for housing growth. In 2019, it was recognized as the nation’s top metro area for sustainable development and the No. 2 city for hiring plans. In 2021, prognosticators foresaw enduring success, naming Grand Rapids the No. 2 U.S. boomtown of the future and one of 11 markets positioned to thrive in the decade.
“This is an incredibly exciting day for the Pro Volleyball Federation,” said Dave Whinham, a founder of Pro Volleyball Federation. “I have had a long relationship with the DeVos Family, and I simply couldn’t be happier. We brought this opportunity to Dan DeVos and his team first because we love working with them and know they can be counted on to do a sensational job. To have this world-class organization as the first team to be announced in our new league is sensational and provides a glimpse into the great announcements to come.”
Pro Volleyball Federation will launch its inaugural season in February 2024 with world-class players and coaches, including some of America’s greatest volleyball players. Pro Volleyball Federation is played at a major-league level in major arenas with elite athletes who, for the first time, have an opportunity to make a real living wage and play professional volleyball at the highest level without leaving the country.
“We’re excited that our West Michigan Pro Volleyball franchise is the first to be announced in the Pro Volleyball Federation, and we are very proud to bring women’s professional sports to Grand Rapids and Van Andel Arena,” said DeVos. “Volleyball’s popularity is exploding. The Midwest is a hotbed for the sport, the Big Ten is the most dominant conference in the NCAA, and there are a number of strong club, high school, and college programs across our region.
“We have a history with and have great respect for the people behind Pro Volleyball Federation, some of whom we’ve known for more than two decades,” added DeVos. “This is a true women’s major league sport and team coming to Grand Rapids. We strongly believe in the league’s vision to provide the highest level of women’s professional sports in our country, and we are excited to be in on the ground floor.”
In a video message played during the press conference, Grand Rapids Mayor Rosalynn Bliss remarked that “this is such an exciting announcement for our community. I can tell you as the first female mayor of our city, I am especially excited to hear that we will have a women’s pro team playing downtown. I know I’ll be excited to see them and attend the games, but I know that it will also have a huge impact on girls all throughout our city and region. They will be mentors and individuals that girls right here in our city can look up to.”
West Michigan Pro Volleyball will be holding a “Name the Team” contest, with details to be announced in the coming months. Fans are encouraged to visit wmprovolleyball.com to sign up for the team’s email list and to receive information about tickets and sponsorships. Fans can visit provolleyball.com to learn more about the league.
Pro Volleyball Federation has attracted some well-known founding partners from inside and outside the sport. Super Bowl champion Trent Dilfer highlights an impressive roster of founding partners in support of the venture. In addition, two legends of the sport – Dr. Cecile Reynaud and Laurie Corbelli – will be intimately involved from the start, as will Team USA veteran Jenna Rosenthal. The league is led by CEO Jen Spicher.
Founders of the league are Dave Whinham, president & CEO of The TEAM Management, LLC, and Stephen Evans, president of The Remedy. The duo boasts many years of combined experience in building and managing professional sports leagues and teams and providing comprehensive consultation and thought leadership to the industry.
Pro Volleyball Federation expects to make additional announcements in the coming weeks regarding inaugural season team ownership groups and markets, along with additional founding partners joining the league. In addition to upcoming announcements of team markets and ownership groups, Pro Volleyball Federation will soon be making announcements related to corporate partners, media and broadcast alliances, additional league investors and other key partners.
Those wishing to become a part of Pro Volleyball Federation, whether as a player, coach, team owner, investor, sponsor, vendor, media company, or host venue, can email firstname.lastname@example.org.
ABOUT PRO VOLLEYBALL FEDERATION
Pro Volleyball Federation is REAL pro volleyball and the premier women’s professional volleyball league in North America. Pro Volleyball Federation will begin play in February 2024 with world class players and coaches, including some of America’s greatest volleyball players and great players from around the world. Our entire focus is on ensuring that our level and quality of play, our treatment of our players, the quality of our event presentations, and our day-to-day fan experience is world class and the very best offered in North America. For more information, visit ProVolleyball.com.
ABOUT THE TEAM MANAGEMENT, LLC
Since 2002, The TEAM Management has served as The Experts in Acquisition and Management, successfully managing transactions for an array of entities throughout the sports and entertainment industries. Work includes teams at all levels, venues, buyers, sellers, licensed products, television and media projects and other related businesses. Along with its brokering services, The TEAM, based in Columbus, Ohio, has developed a comprehensive consulting practice and mature media and live event production capabilities. For more information, visit TheTeamLLC.com.
ABOUT THE REMEDY
Headquartered in Frisco, Texas, The Remedy is a boutique brand strategy and development agency that produces compelling brand experiences for clients within an array of industries. The Remedy’s comprehensive and integrated brand creation, brand activation and brand management solutions are designed to deliver impact and value to the customer. The Remedy’s client roster spans from blue chip brands to start-ups, offering clients fully integrated brand building, comprehensive marketing and communications, and world-class creative development. For more information visit TheRemedyBranding.com.
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