UFC management has denied the report on a combat news web site that Zuffa (the parent company of UFC) has been sold for $4.2 billion dollars. Below is the initial story of the sale.
The UFC will soon be in the hands of a new ownership group.
Multiple sources confirmed with FloCombat on Monday afternoon that a bid of $4.2 billion from a group consisting of WME-IMG, the Dalian Wanda Group, The Kraft Group and Tencent Holdings was accepted by Zuffa brass. While this does not mean the entire company is officially sold, it is a strong likelihood that the sale will be completed shortly.
A sealed bidding process handled by the investment bank Goldman Sachs accepted private bids from a number of companies. Initially, many of the companies were filing separate bids.
But unable to come close to the valuation Zuffa was looking for, they combined into two groups. One featured WME-IMG (led by Zuffa confidant Ari Emmanuel), the Dalian Wanda Group, The Kraft Group (owners of the New England Patriots and other sporting properties) and Tencent Holdings, the owners and operators of the largest internet portal in China. Tencent Holdings also owns Riot Games, the owners of the popular e-sports competitive game League of Legends.
FloCombat sources indicated that the majority of the money for the deal is coming from the Dalian Wanda Group and Tencent Holdings. But WME-IMG and the Kraft Group would act as the faces of the new ownership group, at least in North America.