Christopher Ilitch, president and CEO of Ilitch Holdings, Inc., today announced the hiring of Chris Granger as group president, sports and entertainment, where he will work closely with Ilitch to enhance fan and partner experience, grow and develop business talent in the company’s sports and entertainment divisions, and collaborate with partners to maximize venue usage.
Most recently, Granger served as president of the Sacramento Kings and Sacramento Basketball Holdings, LLC. His experience in Sacramento is tailor fit for the transition the Detroit Red Wings are currently undergoing with their move to Little Caesars Arena; he had a heavy hand in the development of Sacramento’s new Golden 1 Center and it’s 1.5 million square-foot downtown development project, Downtown Commons.
“Bringing Chris to Detroit and to our organization is a big win,” says Ilitch. “His proven history of innovation, fan-first approach, and community commitment are a perfect fit for our team as we prepare for the opening of Little Caesars Arena and ongoing development across The District Detroit.”
Granger will report directly to Christopher Ilitch. As part of the new chain of command, Tom Wilson, president and CEO of Olympia Entertainment and Duane MacLean, executive vice president of business operations for the Detroit Tigers, will report directly to Granger.
Red Wings and Tigers general managers Ken Holland and Al Avila will report to Christopher Ilitch.
“I’m excited to join Ilitch Holdings at this unprecedented period of growth and opportunity,” says Granger. “The organization knows how to do things right for fans, partners, and the community, and I look forward to contributing to the dynamic, transformative, and impactful work underway.”
Granger earned a bachelor’s degree from Cornell University, and his masters of business administration degree from Yale.