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VNL Council praises great success of the first edition of the event

FIVB President Dr. Ary S. Graça F° opened the Volleyball Nations League (VNL) Council meeting on Wednesday, August 23
Lausanne, Switzerland, August 24, 2018 – FIVB President Dr. Ary S. Graça F° opened the Volleyball Nations League (VNL) Council meeting yesterday, congratulating the National Federations and FIVB partners on the huge success of the inaugural edition of the event.

Special praise went to Russia and the USA, winners of the men’s and women’s competition respectively, for their incredible athletic performances which kept fans on the edge of their seats all over the world.

The VNL is a revolutionary new FIVB event, where 16 nations go head-to-head in a round robin format, battling to become Volleyball Nations League Champion. During the VNL Council meeting, President Ary Graça highlighted why the VNL stands out as an innovative move for the FIVB.

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The FIVB President said: “We are making history here! The VNL is a huge step for volleyball and it has truly taken us to the next level. All over the world, we ensured the same standard of arenas – the same “look and feel” throughout the VNL. Secondly, we increased prize money for the women’s champion to make it equal with the men’s which is so important for our sport. We also made a decision to offer prize money during the round robin phase. In total this amounted to more than 7 million USD. This is a big investment for us.

“Our vision for volleyball is to be modern and innovative. We are always trying to advance volleyball, by using the latest technology and partnering with some of the biggest companies in the world, like Microsoft for digital transformation and IMG for TV production and distribution. Our total cumulative TV audience for the first edition of the VNL was 1.2 billion people. This is a great base, and we will work hard to better this in 2019.”

The Challenge System continued to show itself as a key example of on-court technological innovation. During the VNL, 1,452 challenges were requested, with 592 successful (40.77%). These numbers clearly show the importance of utilising the latest technology in volleyball.

The FIVB also partnered with the Grammy award-winning Australian DJ duo NERVO, who created the anthem of VNL, “Worlds Collide”. NERVO performed live at various VNL events, including the Finals in China and France. This collaboration with young musicians took fan experience in volleyball to a new level, and highlights the FIVB’s commitment to leading the way in fan engagement.

The VNL Council also listened to the case studies from the National Federations and TV broadcasters, as well as discussed the calendar for the 2019 season and potential opportunities for future VNL editions.

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