VOIT AN AMERICAN LEGACY
Founded by William J. Voit – the son of German-American immigrants – Voit began its journey as a humble tire retreading company in Los Angeles, California. With a passion for invention and delight in California’s sunny beaches, William J. Voit, developed and patented the an all-rubber inflatable ball with an air retention valve that gave way to the first rubber beachball.
With the success of the rubber beach ball, the company underwent a dramatic transition and throughout the 1930s and 40s Voit introduced a number of patents that revolutionized the way we play. Chief amongst these innovations, Voit developed a process of vulcanization that allowed leather to be fixed onto a separate rubber bladder; a crucial step in the development of the modern basketball.
Voit’s patents and products greatly increased athletic and recreational activities across America’s school systems. And it led to the universal use of a new product that now dominates sales the field. Recognizing, Voit’s contribution to collegiate athletics, W.J. Voit Memorial Trophy was awarded to the best college football player by Helms Athletic Foundation on the Pacific Coast from 1951 to 1978; Bill McColl of Stanford University became the first collegiate to earn the award.
In 1949, the company passed into the hands of William J.’s son, who took the company from a family business into an international leader in the sporting goods industry. In 1959 Voit opened its first plant outside México City, and soon grew to become a staple of the Mexican market as well.
Under William Voit Jr. Voit plunged into professional diving equipment, after developing the Swimaster and Aqualung lines. It developed the first rubber-bodied water-polo ball, which was adopted as the Official Match Ball for the Olympics. And took on Hollywood. Voit provided the masks and find for underwater scenes in the 1959 TV series SEA HUNT, staring Lloyd Bridges as Mike Nelson, and once again in 1965 for THUNDERBALL, the fourth James Bond film starring Sean Connery as the M16 agent.
In the end innovation and expansion brought its own set of problems, and by the early 1980s Voit began a slow retreat from the US market while its spirit still shined bright abroad. Voit became the Official Match Ball of the Mexican Premier Division since 1985 and has been a beloved brand south of the border ever since. Now, after expanding its presence in markets across the globe Voit is ready to return home.