It’s official, the UFC has been sold to the highest bidder according to Las Vegas CBS affiliate KLAS-TV who reported that the deal was signed sealed and delivered on Saturday. The new ownership group consists of talent agency William Morris Endeavor, International Management Group, and the private equity group MSD. Also in the group is the global investment firm KKR. In simple terms, this deal means Lorenzo Fertitta and Frank Fertitta will eventually be stepping down, but for now there will be, according to UFC President Dana White, a “transitional” period moving from the Fertitta’s to the new ownership group.

UFC

While this deal is great business turning a $2 million dollar investment into a $4 billion dollar sale, UFC President Dana White will still remain with the company and acquire a minority stake in the UFC along with 10% of the $4 billion dollar purchase, which now makes Dana White $400 million richer. Day-to-day operations of the world’s biggest Mixed Martial Arts organization will stay virtually the same with Dana White leading the way. So there will be not much change as far as the current structure of UFC fight cards and production within the events.

With this sale this is the biggest purchase of any sports company in the history, of well, ever. It is truly remarkable and captivating that just 15 years ago two casino giants in Las Vegas purchased a company that was dead in the water for $2 million and now 15 years later the sport and the league is a global phenomenon. Safe to say this will go down as one of the best sport business deals of all-time. While Dana White has had his fair share of head-scratching moments from boss to fighter— if this deal consisted of him leaving the UFC I for one would be very worried because in terms of marketing the brand he has done an astounding job turning MMA into a household sport. I guess the only thing left to say is Cha ching!

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