Kerri Walsh Jennings, the three-time summer Olympic Games beach volleyball gold medal winner and legend announced her new partnership with Franklin Sports yesterday. The trusted global sporting goods brand aims to gain valuable exposure regarding this business collaboration as the Tokyo 2020 Games officially begins on Friday, July 23, 2021, the first time in the 21st century she will not be representing Team USA. The mutual goal between superstar athlete and the 75-year manufacturer and retailer of sports products is to develop a full line of volleyball gear with an emphasis on high-performance and comfort. The Franklin Family launch features Walsh Jennings signature apparel brand created as both athleticwear and lifestyle wear. Look for the retail line to also include unique volleyballs, as well as nets, kneepads and other training accessories. The Sports Techie community blog is excited for the sport to surge in popularity again once the pandemic is under control across the world. Volleyball will certainly be influenced by these two icons launching her new collection together, ideally with some sports technology influence in soon-to-be released products.
Volleyball Product Recharge
The game is popular both indoors and outdoors, especially inside gyms around the country and outside at beaches, making the first products to launch from the collection, three different volleyball models, a sure-fire way to gain acceptance. These signature balls are now available on franklinsports.com and at Dick’s Sporting Goods stores nationwide. Look for more goods to be available for purchase by August as the summer temperatures continue to sizzle before the fall season sets in.
Kerri is certainly the kind of star athlete, warm face and friendly personality, Franklin covets to work alongside for the good of the sport, regardless of her political views. Walsh Jenning’s playing resume is impressive making her one of the most decorated volleyball players of all-time. Now her focus is to dedicate the next phase of life to growing the sport she loves through further development of her own company, p1440. The Scotts Valley, California, native no longer living in the state, and her husband, Casey, started their company in 2018 as a digital platform highlighting the beach volleyball sport and their perspective of it’s culture.
Walsh Jennings is well-known inside the volleyball community as the Association of Professional Volleyball (AVP) all-time leader in winnings and victories, and became a mainstream name after winning gold medals during the 2004, 2008, and 2012 Olympic Games.
“I’ve been a Franklin Sports kid my whole life, so this is a dream come true,” said Walsh Jennings. “My first love in sports was baseball, and Franklin was our go-to choice. I had plans to be the first female pitcher in the major leagues, but things took a turn when I found volleyball. This partnership means the world to me. I aspire to spread my love and joy for the game to as many people as possible, and this partnership will allow me to do just that. Franklin stands for what’s most important in life – integrity, family, playfulness, and excellence. I’m honored to walk this path with them, and I can’t wait to share everything we’ve created with the world.”
The Franklin product team and Kerri worked to design equipment and apparel based upon her expert knowledge and desire to grow the sport. The customized-development process was used to create enhanced products available for a wide variety of volleyball athletes. Starting the collection off are three new volleyball models. The next steps for the #FranklinFamily is to follow up with more products, equipment and training accessories, culminating in her signature apparel line, made to enter both the high-quality athleticwear and comfort-driven lifestyle markets.
“We’re thrilled to partner with Kerri Walsh Jennings, a true American sports icon who has been at the apex of her sport for the better part of the last two decades,” said Adam Franklin, president of Franklin Sports. “Nobody knows volleyball as well as Kerri does, and through her work with p1440, she has her finger on the pulse of where the game stands today and what it needs to reach its growth potential. This partnership with Kerri is really about our shared passion for reaching more athletes and growing the sport. Through our development work with Kerri, we have created a collection of accessible, high-quality volleyball apparel and equipment that will launch at a very exciting time for the sport.”
Sports Techie, Franklin Sports is based in Stoughton, Massachusetts and features over 10,000 products across many different sports. The company has official partnerships with Major League Baseball (MLB), the National Hockey League (NHL), and hundreds of professional athletes. Franklin is a multigenerational, family-owned business that sees the value of aligning with sports tech to increase value.
My hope is the culture of volleyball stays neutral when it comes to politics, same as pickleball.
Perhaps Franklin can design a volleyball-specific mask that would allow Kerri and other like-mined players to wear it with pride rather than divide.
I can only hope until they make it so.
See you later sportstechie in Seattle, Atlanta and around the world!
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