If reports are to be believed UFC have struck gold with a massive 1.5$ billion TV deal with ESPN, according to Variety.
It was announced 2 weeks back that the UFC had struck a digital media deal with ESPN+, now it seems that ESPN/Disney have got the TV side of things sorted too.
FOX Network, who have been airing the UFC for the past 7 years, apparently have been unable to strike a deal. The ESPN will commence services starting Jan, 2019.
Details of the Deal
The new deal is apparently worth 300$ million a year covering 5 years, which adds up to a mammoth 1.5$ billion in income for the UFC. This is a huge bump up from their previous deal with FOX. FOX according to reports, paid 100$ million a year for the services. Here are the unconfirmed details of the deal.
- ESPN is now home to all non-PPV content.
- ESPN+ will be 5$ a month, along with an option to purchase UFC’s fightpass for additional 5$. 10$ a month for all UFC archives on both streaming platforms.
- ESPN will get 30 fights every year starting from Jan, 2019. ESPN will replace UFC on FOX cards.
- All non-PPV events will be broadcast-ed on ESPN+ and ESPN’s linear channels.
WME-IMG who bought the UFC for 4.4$ billion back in 2016, seem to be striking all the right deals – in spite of dwindling viewership. ESPN, the self titled ‘The World Leader in Sports’ are likely to take UFC and the sport as a whole to the next level.