One of the United States’ most rabid volleyball hotbeds now boasts a team in North America’s premier women’s professional volleyball league, as Omaha businessman Danny White and performance artist Jason Derulo announced that they will launch a Pro Volleyball Federation franchise in Omaha, NE, during the league’s inaugural 2024 season.
White and Derulo announced their new venture on social media. Derulo, who headlined the third annual NFL TikTok Tailgate with The Black Keys on Sunday prior to Super Bowl LVII, has more than 57 million follows on TikTok, making him one of the world’s most followed TikTok content creators. White is a seasoned entrepreneur and a founder/CEO of City+Ventures, one of the fastest growing companies in the United States, and the fastest growing company in the state of Nebraska.
“This is another special day for Pro Volleyball Federation,” said Dave Whinham, a founder of Pro Volleyball Federation. “The reaction we have had since announcing the launch of the league just over ten weeks ago has been phenomenal. We always knew we wanted a team in Omaha, and we knew it would take a special ownership group to live up to the huge potential of the Omaha market. We know we have found that special group and are so excited to see what Danny and Jason will do to undoubtedly make Omaha a flagship franchise in our league.”
White and Derulo have numerous common business interests and have formed a formidable team, investing in companies across a wide span of industries. White is also a close associate of the Burrow Family, which in its own right has deep ties to the state of Nebraska. Jimmy Burrow, Pro Volleyball Federation’s Director of Brand Advancement, is a former football player and coach at the University of Nebraska and Jamie, Jimmy’s son and Joe Burrow’s older brother, is a former All-Big 12 linebacker for the Cornhuskers who still resides in Omaha. Both Jimmy and Jamie helped to recruit White and Derulo to Pro Volleyball Federation.
The news of the new Omaha team comes at a time when Pro Volleyball Federation will be making numerous market announcements in the coming days. Omaha is the second market to be publicly announced. The team will hold a local celebration in Omaha in the weeks to come to officially introduce the city to its first major women’s professional sports team.
“This is so exciting and something that Jason and I can’t stop thinking about,” said White, who has become a leading figure in the business world, well-known for his ability to identify and capitalize on new ventures and opportunities. “From the first day we were approached by Pro Volleyball Federation, we knew this was exactly what we were looking for, not only to bring something special and impactful to Omaha, but also because it’s an opportunity to dig in creatively and help transform the way people consume sports and entertainment content. We have a lot of ideas, and we can’t wait to get started.”
As a billionaire with a proud athletic background from his days as a star hockey player, White not only brings his wealth and business acumen to the table but also the values instilled in him by his family. White and his Partner/Co-Founder of City+Ventures, Omaha-native Chris Erickson, take immense pride in their accomplishments with City+Ventures while leading the charge in improving communities through impactful business solutions.
Omaha will be a fertile home for Pro Volleyball Federation. The University of Nebraska women’s volleyball program has led the nation in attendance since 2013, and Omaha, which hosted the 2022 NCAA Division I Volleyball Championships in December inside a jam-packed crowd at CHI Health Center in downtown Omaha, made headlines when this past season’s matchup pitting Nebraska and hometown Creighton was played before 15,797 fans at the same arena. The in-state match-up set the record for the largest crowd for a regular-season volleyball match in NCAA history.
“Are you kidding me?” Derulo excitedly proclaimed about becoming a pro sports team owner. “I have learned and grown so much as an entrepreneur through my friendship with Danny, and this opportunity to spread my wings within a new industry drives me professionally and creatively. I am a passionate creator, and by being able to help these world-class athletes who are also passionate about their craft further their careers, build their own brands, and establish themselves as true superstars within their sport and their community – that’s what truly excites me.”
Derulo has sold more than 250 million singles worldwide, achieving 15 platinum singles. He joins Taylor Swift, Elton John, Janet Jackson, Michael Jackson, Britney Spears, Maroon 5, and Christina Aguilera as the only artists in history to achieve a #1 single on US Pop Radio in three different decades.
“Pro Volleyball Federation is taking a modern-day approach to connecting the needs of the modern-day athlete with the modern-day fan, all within an economical model that makes sense and a technological ecosystem designed for the digital age, breaking the traditional mold in professional sports,” said Stephen Evans, who, along with Whinham, is a founder of Pro Volleyball Federation. “With Jason’s proven ability to engage with and grow audiences and Danny’s drive to succeed in everything he puts his mind to, Omaha is going to be a rocket ship of innovation and excellence.”
Pro Volleyball Federation will launch its inaugural season in 8-10 markets 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.
Omaha is joined by Grand Rapids, MI, as the first two markets announced for the 2024 season. The Grand Rapids team is owned and operated by DP Fox Sports & Entertainment chairman Dan DeVos who, along with his family, also owns the NBA’s Orlando Magic and the AHL’s Grand Rapids Griffins. DeVos is also a limited partner of Major League Baseball’s Chicago Cubs.
Pro Volleyball Federation will make additional announcements in the coming days regarding inaugural season team markets, including two top ten United States media markets and the announcement of the league’s first female team owner.
Pro Volleyball Federation has attracted some well-known founding partners from inside and outside the sport. Super Bowl champion Trent Dilfer and Pro Bowl quarterback Joe Burrow, along with his parents Jimmy and Robin Burrow, highlight an impressive roster of founding partners in support of the venture. In addition, two legends of the sport – Dr. Cecile Reynaud and Laurie Corbelli – have been intimately involved from the start, as have veteran international-level American players Jenna Rosenthal, Tori Dilfer Stringer, Morgan Hentz, and Ronika Stone. The league is led by CEO Jen Spicher.
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.