History

The professional basketball Leagues of Italy, France and Spain established the ULEB ( Union des Ligues Européennes de Basket-Ball ) on June 25, 1991 in Rome ( Italy ). In November 1992, a joint All-Star weekend was held in Madrid, Spain, featuring the most outstanding players from the Spanish and Italian Leagues ( ACB and LEGA ). The experience was repeated one year later in Rome before a crowd of 10.500 fans. In 1994, the French League joined the event and the All Star weekend moved to Valencia, Spain, with LEGA, ACB and LNB stars competing and showing their skills. The Greek League was the first to join the three founders in 1996. The ULEB ( see its first logo ) has had three Presidents since its inception: Gian Luigi Porelli ( since September 1991 until March 1998 ), Eduardo Portela, ( since March 18, 1998 til October 6, 2016 ) and Tomas Van Den Spiegel, elected October 6, 2016. In December 1999 the Union welcomed the British, Belgian and Swiss Leagues. A key date in ULEB and European basketball history was Friday June 9, 2000. That day, the most important clubs in Europe and the ULEB Leagues, met in Sitges ( town located south of Barcelona ), and decided to create and manage a new competition, the Euroleague. Until that moment, it had been FIBA to run the men's top basketball clubs competition in Europe. The first game of the new Euroleague, Real Madrid v Olympiakos, was played October 16, 2000 in Madrid.

One year later, in October 2001, the ULEB was expanded with the Leagues of Germany, Netherlands and Poland. In the summer of 2002, ULEB created a second-tier pan-European tournament, the ULEB Cup. Its first game was played in Istanbul on October 15, 2002, facing Darussafaka and Novo Mesto. ULEB managed the Euroleague and the ULEB Cup until 2009, when the property of both competitions was transferred to Euroleague Commercial Assets (ECA), a company where 11 big European clubs are the majority stockholders. 

In June 2003 the League of Lithuania joined and one year later, in July 2005 the Union was expanded with the League of Israel. The most recent addition to the ULEB family is the Russian VTB United League, which was granted admission on July 2014 replacing its predecessor, the PBL ( which had been admitted on May 2011 ). So, the ULEB currently represents a total number of 11 professional Basketball Leagues from across Europe. Other Leagues such as Portugal, Adriatic, Austria, Switzerland and the Czech Republic have been also members of the ULEB in the past, but all of them left the Union for different reasons ( Portuguese and Swiss Leagues ceased operations, Adriatic lost recognition from FIBA, while Austrian, British, Czech Leagues withdrew ).

ULEB is currently minority shareholder of both ECA via its 100% owned company Euroleague Basketball SL, and also of Basketball Champions League SA. 

As written above, Belgian former player Tomas Van Den Spiegel is the current President of the ULEB. The executive committee of the Union is composed of him plus the Leagues from Israel, France, Netherlands, Belgium, Spain and the VTB United League. 

The ULEB office is in Barcelona.

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