VakifBank Istanbul will be defending their FIVB Club World Championship this year, after their 2017 success in Kobe when they beat Brazil's Rexona Sesc Rio de Janeiro 3-0 in the final.
They had previously won the world title in 2013 in Zurich with another 3-0 win over the Rio side. VakifBank, alongside Istanbul cross-town archrivals Eczacibasi, are the only teams in the history of the competition to have won the title twice.
VakifBank are taking part in the competition for the fifth time and, in addition to their two gold medals, have also won a silver in 2011 in Doha when the lost to Rabita Baku 3-0 in the final and a bronze in 2016 in Manila, when they beat Switzerland's Volero Zurich 3-1 for third place.
VakifBank have been crowned European champions four times in 2011, 2013, 2017 and 2017. They beat Romania's CSM Volei Alba Blaj in the final of latest edition earlier this year in Bucharest. VakifBank are the most internationally decorated club of Turkey, having also won four silver and one bronze medals in the European Champions League. This is in addition to titles in the 2004 European CEV Cup and 2008 European Challenge Cup.
Founded in 1986 as Gunes Sigorta Sports Club in Istanbul and later merging withh VakifBank Sports Club in Ankara to take its current form, the club has amassed a record ten national championship titles as well six Turkish Cups (including the latest editions of both, in 2018).
VakifBank have made it into the Guiness Book of World Records with a winning streak of 73 matches across all competitions from 23 October 2012 to 22 January 2014 when it was brought to an end by their other cross-town rivals Fenerbahce Istanbul.