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50 Most Admired Companies of The Year 2017

Enhancing the baseball and softball experience for players at all levels and help them reach their goals: D-BAT Sports

thesiliconreview kyle griffis co founder cade griffis ceo d bat sports 17bat-and-ball sport, baseball, is the national pastime of the United States. It is one of the youth sports which are commonly known as nonschool-related sports activities. These sports are usually organized through local programs, such as League; that is funded by donations, fees and business sponsorships. They have no single national organization or oversight body. Baseball's popularity has been spreading in recent decades, but it spread to a number of countries in the 1860s and 70s. The game is followed with fervent interest in Japan, Taiwan, South Korea, Mexico, Venezuela, Cuba, the Dominican Republic, the Caribbean countries, and elsewhere. The United States has the highest baseball fans in the entire globe. Every single kid in the U.S plays baseball or has the will to learn the game and dream to play in a major baseball league. The game has its own charm and makes the fans go crazy about it. 

The All-American from Dallas Baptist University, Cade Griffis saw a need for a state of the art, high-quality baseball and softball indoor training facility that matched the needs and expectations of the players, a facility that could meet the needs of a 7-year-old first-time child as well as an MLB player. So, along with his brother Kyle Griffis and Craig Penfold started a training academy named D-BAT.  It offers private lessons and camps for young players looking to improve their game. While the average customers are mostly 12 years old, D-BAT has many older customers that will just come in, to hit balls like one would shoot hoops at the YMCA. This academy boasts several major leaguers as alums, including Dallas native and Los Angeles Dodgers ace Clayton Kershaw. 

About the best baseball and softball training platform

D-BAT is about “Developing Beliefs, Attitudes, and Traditions” but Griffis initially wanted to call it “Yard Rats” or “Sweat Box”.  Based out of Carrollton, Texas, the premier baseball academy, D-BAT is set apart by its comprehensive approach to baseball development. It believes each player plays his own version of baseball, and D-BAT tailors instructions to each person, all while teaching them the baseball basics that will last a lifetime.

In November of 1998, D-BAT opened its first location for $185,000. It did not decide to expand until 2009. Cade wanted to learn the business inside and out before expanding. Currently, D-BAT has 45 locations across the US with another 52 locations opening in 2018 and 2019 in the US and China. The first location turned out to be very successful. D-BAT was actually able to turn a small profit in year one. In year two it doubled the profit and was off to the races. Over the initial years, the academy had many customers asking if D-BAT had considered expanding and if so they would like to invest. So this team of amazingly brilliant minds knew they had a model that they could grow and in 2008 they started franchising the D-BAT Model. The feeling that they do it better than anyone kept D-BAT in the race and then it started expanding eventually. 

Popularity and future milestones of D-BAT

As baseball and softball are growing rapidly and top of the line, D-BAT is becoming one of the most popular platforms for training. Its unique facilities offer players of all ages and experience levels the ability to train year round. There are always ways to make things better and ensure growth as an organization. D-BAT is growing consistently because of one believe that you cannot be satisfied with where you are, but continue to look for ways you can improve your company. “That’s how we’ve always done it” are the dangerous words by Griffis that he believes stunts growth.

D-BAT has grown 100% or greater every year for the past 5 years. Currently,  D-BAT has 45 locations opened with another 8-10 opening by the end of 2017 and another 52 locations sold and scheduled to open in 2018 and 2019. This will put the company over the 100 mark. With the corporate support, the organization believes the key to this is to continue to look for better ways to operate and increase revenue streams for our franchisees. This amazing academy is currently looking for a partner to help them secure land and build their own buildings in the future. In 2008, the amazing baseball and softball training academy was approached by a VC company called Suntex Capital. Ned Flemming, the CEO of Suntex had a vision for D-BAT to open up corporate stores across the US in hot baseball and softball markets. But in late 2008 with the market and Suntex was unable to provide the capital for D-BAT to grow, it decided to look at the franchise model.

Griffis spends most of his day working on real-estate deals and talking to the Owners and GM’s discussing ways to improve the systems that D-BAT have in place. The team believes that they would definitely see D-BAT in 90% of the states in the U.S. and also in China, Japan, Mexico and a few other international countries. D-BAT’s 5-year goal is to have 250 locations. The team sees themselves doing the same thing they have been doing the past 20 years and that is protecting and growing the brand of D-BAT.

The man behind D-BAT’s success

Griffis, or just “Cade,” as everyone calls him is the Chief Executive Officer(CEO) of the multimillion-dollar baseball training franchise, D-BAT. Griffis also worked with Adairs Baseball World along with Steve Adair and Bill Blakely. Cade Griffis himself was an All-American at Dallas Baptist University, then was signed by the Kansas City Royals and played for two-and-a-half years.

“We are here to make the game just a little bit more fun for each kid and for the parent. It’s what drives our business.”