Dana White: UFC brand now ‘worth $7 billion’ after ESPN deal
Article Published by: mmajunkie.com
UFC President Dana White claims the price tag for his fight promotion is nearly double what it sold for roughly two years ago.
Endeavor purchased the UFC for $4.025 billion in August 2016. There were many perceived uncertainties in the wake of the deal, but White immediately promised it would be for the betterment of the organization in the sport moving forward.
According to White and corroborating investor reports, 2017 was the most financially lucrative year in company history. Add in the UFC’s new stateside television deal with ESPN worth $1.5 billion over five years, and White said the value of the UFC brand now sits at a whopping $7 billion.
“When you think about it we haven’t even scratched the surface yet of how big this thing can be,” White said in a recent interview with Tony Robbins. “We just did a TV deal with ESPN for $1.5 billion for five years. Now the company is worth $7 billion.”
Whether White’s claim is accurate or not is unknown, but he made it clear he still sees the UFC on an upward trajectory. Ratings for the majority of the UFC’s televised events in the United States arguably tell a slightly different story, but the company is still pulling strong gate and attendance numbers, plus there are a lengthy list of international deals that drive significant revenue.
Moreover, over the next several months, the UFC could have several of its bigger stars competing, and that includes Conor McGregor, Nate Diaz, Brock Lesnar, Jon Jones and Georges St-Pierre.
White said the deal with ESPN, which begins Jan. 1, is going to open new doors for the UFC. He expects more exposure for the UFC brand and its athletes. White said he will continue to work hard though the daily grind, as well, and in his mind the results of that will be an even higher quality product.
“Obviously this ESPN deal is going to be massive for us, expose us to millions of people just here in the U.S. that haven’t been exposed to the UFC,” White said. “We’re going to continue to go into markets we haven’t been, we’re going to continue to find the best talent in the world. I love to find up-and-coming talent. I love to find the next guy or girl. Continue to build the sport. That’s it. That’s my focus. It’s not rocket science, it’s nothing crazy. Just continue to do what we do and get bigger and bigger.”
About Jaime Bonetti Zeller
Jaime Bonetti Zeller is an investment professional and entrepreneur with businesses in multiple industries. He is president of Servicios Consulares Eurodom, the local partner in the Caribbean region for VFS Global, a leader global outsourcing and technology services specialist for diplomatic missions and governments worldwide. Jaime Bonetti Zeller also started the company Sofratesa de Panama inc., an organization in the engineering services industry located in Panama City.