events & legacy
interview with lara marich, event hosting & partnerships, volleyball world
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Volleyball is one of the sports that can be played on many surfaces: the traditional sports court, sand or snow … and now water? What is Volleyball World’s strategic desire to diversify its playing surfaces? And how can host cities benefit from this diversity?
We love how versatile volleyball can be, and it is clear from the positive reaction online to events like the one on Ljubljanica river that the fans do to. It really did show the magic of the sport! Innovation is really part of the ethos of Volleyball World, so we are always looking at ways in which we can showcase our beautiful sport and drive more fans to the sport, while also presenting the very best of the host city. The Beach Pro Tour is a great showcase as how the sport can be played anywhere. From natural beaches, to mountains and urban city centers, we bring the beach lifestyle to your cities.
In addition to the diversity of playing surfaces, more and more FIVB events are taking place in spectacular locations – like the latest event on the Ljubljanica river. How do you work with cities to enhance their urban assets?
As we build long-term partnerships with host cities, we always aim to highlight the respective city by showcasing specific landmarks, iconic locations or cultural monuments. This is why we work closely with all of our host cities to determine the best strategy and innovative approach to enhance and promote their city through the power of our athletes and sport through brand and communication.
One of the FIVB’s strategic aims is to increase the relevance of volleyball around the world, making it more popular than ever. What role can host cities play in helping you achieve this goal? Is there a particular region that the FIVB is targeting or will target?
Host cities play an incredibly important role in promoting the sport, both in the build up to the event, during the event itself and the legacy thereafter. And we always look to work closely with our host cities to help maximise the impact of our events – both for the benefit of the city and in terms of drawing more fans and future players to the sport.
One of the FIVB’s tools for developing volleyball globally is the “FIVB Volleyball Empowerment” programme. What does this programme consist of? Can this programme support cities that do not have the necessary resources – financial or otherwise – to host an FIVB event?
The overall goal of the Volleyball Empowerment programme is to empower and improve the level of national teams and athletes. Since 2017, the FIVB has approved 573 projects, totalling an investment of more than 13 million CHF. In terms of events, this support can certainly help to build the foundations from which a host city would be able to host events. For example, the FIVB provided the Philippine National Volleyball Federation with a Gerflor floor which was recently used during the AVC Cup for women. The FIVB is also supporting the Maldives’ beach volleyball development. This FIVB’s support led to the Maldives preparing to host its first-ever Beach Pro Tour Challenge event this October.
What upcoming FIVB events are open for bidding? And where can cities find this information?
Volleyball World takes care of the bidding process for both volleyball and beach volleyball events. There are many exciting hosting opportunities available such as the Beach Pro Tour or future editions of the World Championships to name just a few. Please get in touch!