UFC stands for Ultimate Fighting Championship which is an American company that promotes mixed martial arts (MMA). The company is owned and operated by William Morris Endeavor, and it is based in Las Vegas, Nevada. UFC is the largest MMA promotion company globally, and it features the highest-level fighters in sports from all over the world. UFC has been under the leadership of Dana White since 2001, and as of 2020, it has held more than 500 events.
UFC was founded in 1993, and the founder members were Art Davie, Rorion Gracie, John Milius, Bob Meyrowitz, Campbell McLaren, and David Issacs. The company is owned by different cooperates, including MSD Capital, Kohlberg Kravis, Silver Lake Partners, and Endeavor. The first event was held in 1993, and it was aimed at identifying the most effective martial art in a contest with no weight classes and minimum rules. The fighters came from different disciplines like boxing, kickboxing, Muay Thai, judo, karate, wrestling, and sambo. With time fighters started adapting fighting techniques from more than one discipline, and that is how mixed martial arts came to be.
In the 1990s, Art Davie proposed an eight-man single-elimination tournament to John Milius and Rorion Gracie. The tournament was to be called War of the Worlds (WOW). The tournament was to feature martial artists from different disciplines to determine the best martial art. Davie drafted a business plan, and they got 28 investors to contribute the initial capital to start WOW Promotions.
In 1993 WOW Promotion sought a television partner, and they approached SET and TVKO, who were the producers of pay-per-view. They were turned down, and they later approached Semaphore Entertainment Group (SEG), and they became partners in 1993. SEG changed the name of the show to The Ultimate Fighting Championship.
UFC used the tagline “There are no rules” in the early years, and extreme violence was used, and the audience was warned on the violence in the sport by a disclaimer in the beginning. The violent nature of the sport drew the attention of the authorities, and this led to the ban of the sport in 36 states of the United States.
UFC worked with different bodies, and after sometimes the ban was lifted. The sport became very popular all over the world, and there was a rapid increase in the number of viewers. They signed a seven-year broadcast deal with Fox in August 2011. The first broadcast by the network was viewed by more than 8.8 million viewers, becoming the most-watched MMA event of all time.
In 1996 UFC held its first event outside the United States, and it was held in Puerto Rico. Since then, the company has held events in 15 countries in North America, South America, Asia, Europe, and Oceania. An event held in Canada dubbed UFC 129 held in Rogers Centre had a record attendance of 55,724. Canada has hosted the event 20 times. The United Kingdom has hosted the event 16 times, Brazil 22 events, Australia 7 events, and in Asia, the event has been held in 5 different countries.
UFC signed a partnership with United States Anti-Doping Agency in June 2015. The program involves 2,750 drug tests annually and punishment to the fighters who fail the test. Under the anti-doping policy, the fighters are subjected to random tests at any time and place.
The current rules of UFC were established by the New Jersey Athletic Control Board. Some of the rules that are regulated by the board include issues like attire, rounds, match conduct, match outcome, and fouls, among others. The rules have been very instrumental for the events as the sport is no longer seen as a dangerous sport.
Awards & Achievements
UFC has achieved a lot over the years in promoting mixed martial arts. The sports have been held in several locations around the world, and they have been viewed by millions and millions of people. The company started in 1993, and it has made several champions in mixed martial art both men and women.
Net Worth of UFC in 2023
As of June 2023, Ultimate Fighting Championship is estimated to be worth $4 billion. The major source of the revenue in the company is television deals and pay-per-review business. The company has a hefty deal with Fox, which worth millions. The company is growing very fast, and the revenue will continue to grow as well in the future.
UFC was founded in 1993, and it has become the largest company that promotes mixed martial arts. The founders had the desire to have different disciplines incorporated in one event, and that is how they came up with mixed martial art, and they used their company to promote it globally. Initially, the sport was received with mixed reactions following its violent nature, but with time it was fully accepted and well received. The founders worked really hard to make the sport acceptable to people from all walks of life, and they have succeeded.