Ultimate Fighting Championship has, after weeks of rumours, been sold to WME-IMG for $4 billion.
The talent and sports agency WME-IMG confirmed the deal, which equates to just over £3bn, to purchase the mixed martial arts organisation.
A statement from the agency read: “WME-IMG, which has a proven track record of building leading sports brands, will focus on accelerating the sport’s popularity and presence around the world. Silver Lake Partners and KKR (Kohlberg Kravis Roberts) will join WME-IMG as new strategic investors, along with MSD Capital, L.P. and MSD Partners, L.P. which will provide preferred equity financing.”
UFC chairman and co-owner Lorenzo Fertitta will step down from his position but both he and fellow co-owner and brother Frank will retain a minority interest in the organisation. Dana White will also have a smaller ownership stake but will continue his role with UFC as president.
White told ESPN that fans should not be concerned, and that MMA is “going to the next level.”