UFC Fight Camp - Jose Aldo retiresSep 22
And still! UFC and BT Sport announce new long-term media rights agreement
BT Sport will remain the exclusive home of the UFC in the UK & Ireland after announcing a new multi-year extension to their existing broadcast partnership.
UFC, the world’s premier mixed martial arts organisation, and BT Sport today announced a new multi-year media rights deal that builds upon their existing broadcast partnership for the UK and Ireland, ensuring that BT Sport will remain the exclusive media home for UFC.
The new deal means BT Sport and the UFC will celebrate a decade-long association next year having joined forces for the first time in 2013.
It was a different world back then, when the legendary Anderson Silva reigned over the middleweight division and Hall of Famer Georges St-Pierre was still carving out his unmatched welterweight legacy.
But with a new generation of British MMA stars, led by the likes of Tom Aspinall and Leon Edwards, vying to become the champions of tomorrow, BT Sport will continue bringing you our industry-leading coverage of one of the world’s fastest growing sports.
We were blown away by the fans in London earlier this year
- Dana White
The new agreement includes all live UFC events, including numbered events and Fight Nights, plus hundreds of hours of original programming from shows such as UFC Countdown and UFC Connected and a deep library of classic combat sports events, highlighted by the biggest bouts in UFC history.
“We were blown away by the awesome response from the fans at our London event earlier this year,” said UFC President Dana White.
“The fans from the UK and Ireland love this sport and they have always been great to us. And now, our roster of talent from these countries is the strongest it’s ever been.
"We’re thrilled to continue our partnership with BT Sport to keep promoting these athletes, building stars, and broadcasting the best combat sports events on the planet to these incredible fans.”
Rachel Knight, Sports Rights Director, BT Sport said, “BT Sport is delighted to continue our successful partnership with UFC. We are entering a golden age for the sport in the UK and Ireland, with an incredibly exciting roster of local talent coming through.
"We look forward to working closely with these brilliant athletes and with UFC to continue to tell the stories and showcase the sport to our viewers in the years to come.”
We are entering a golden age for the sport
- Rachel Knight, Sports Rights Director, BT Sport
Following a three-year absence, UFC returned to the UK earlier this year in March with an unforgettable event at the O2.
UFC Fight Night: Volkov vs Aspinall recorded a gate of US $4.5M (£3.56M), making it the highest grossing single sporting event in O2 history.
Seven British fighters on the card scored victories, including Tom Aspinall, Molly McCann, and Paddy Pimblett, highlighting the level of MMA talent currently in the UK.
With this hugely successful return, UFC cemented their commitment to the market with the return of a second event in London, scheduled to take place on Saturday, July 23, at The O2. Check out the latest news about the UFC’s summertime return to British shores here.
The UFC has held 28 total events in the UK and Ireland since 2002, and every event has sold out, exemplifying the brand strength which has been built.