TKO MERGES UFC® AND WWE® GLOBAL PARTNERSHIPS TEAMS TO CREATE SPORTS MARKETING POWERHOUSE
Combined Unit to Offer Blue-Chip Brands Unprecedented Integration within Two of the World’s Most Iconic Sports and Entertainment Properties
NEW YORK, Jan. 04, 2024 – KO Group Holdings, Inc. (NYSE: TKO), a premium sports and entertainment company, today announced that it has combined the UFC and WWE global partnerships teams into one unit, providing brands with access to one of the most formidable sports marketing portfolios in the world.
UFC and WWE, which collectively serve more than one billion young and diverse fans in 170 countries, provide brand partners unparalleled scale and reach across multiple platforms, including premium live events, original content, and digital media. Further powered and enhanced by the Endeavor flywheel, the company’s global infrastructure that also includes IMG’s dynamic sales teams around the world, UFC and WWE together can offer marketers significantly expanded inventory, vastly increased brand visibility, extensive international reach, and unique integration opportunities across UFC and WWE premier content.
Grant Norris-Jones, who has played a key role in driving UFC’s global partnerships to six consecutive years of record revenue, has been elevated to lead the integrated unit as Executive Vice President and Head of Global Partnerships for TKO, which includes the entirety of UFC and WWE properties. Norris-Jones will work alongside Lou Koskovolis, who is also taking on an expanded role as TKO’s Executive Vice President of Global Partnerships. Together, they will focus on delivering unique, authentic integrations for TKO’s corporate partners. This new joint effort will further benefit from additional support and collaboration with the Endeavor Partnerships team to maximize value for brands across the entire Endeavor portfolio of assets.
With partnership sales, activations, and operations teams in New York, Las Vegas, Stamford, Conn., London, Sao Paulo, Sydney, Shanghai, and Toronto, the newly combined unit will focus on creating new revenue opportunities and brand integrations across UFC’s and WWE’s must-watch live and original content.
“Since Endeavor acquired UFC in 2016, UFC’s global partnerships business has become a significant growth area,” said Andrew Schleimer, Chief Financial Officer, TKO, “and we believe WWE’s partnerships business has similar potential. Together, UFC and WWE create a sports marketing powerhouse, with hundreds of live events per year and a reach that’s equal to, or better than, the world’s biggest sports properties. The newly integrated global partnerships team will offer premium brands the opportunity to integrate and activate within UFC’s and WWE’s extraordinarily popular content to engage their massive fan bases around the world.”
In recent years, UFC has partnered with brands that are consumer product and category leaders, including Anheuser-Busch, Crypto.com, DraftKings, Jose Cuervo, Monster Energy, PRIME Hydration, Timex, and VeChain.-
In addition, WWE has worked with dozens of blue-chip brands across its roster of promotional assets. Over the last year, WWE has activated with Applebee’s, General Mills, Mattel, Netflix, PepsiCo, Pizza Hut, Slim Jim, and Snickers.
TKO Group Holdings, Inc. (NYSE: TKO) is a premium sports and entertainment company that comprises UFC, the world’s premier mixed martial arts organization, and WWE, an integrated media organization and the recognized global leader in sports entertainment. Together, our organizations reach more than 1 billion TV households in approximately 170 countries, and we organize more than 350 live events year-round, attracting over one million fans. TKO is majority owned by Endeavor Group Holdings, Inc. (NYSE: EDR), a global sports and entertainment company.
UFC® is the world’s premier mixed martial arts organization (MMA), with more than 700 million fans and 243 million social media followers. The organization produces more than 40 live events annually in some of the most prestigious arenas around the world while broadcasting to over 900 million TV households across more than 170 countries. UFC’s athlete roster features the world’s best MMA athletes representing more than 80 countries. The organization’s digital offerings include UFC FIGHT PASS®, one of the world’s leading streaming services for combat sports. UFC is part of TKO Group Holdings (NYSE: TKO) and is headquartered in Las Vegas, Nevada. For more information, visit UFC.com and follow UFC at Facebook.com/UFC and @UFC on X, Snapchat, Instagram, and TikTok: @UFC.
WWE, part of TKO Group Holdings (NYSE: TKO), is an integrated media organization and the recognized global leader in sports entertainment. The company consists of a portfolio of businesses that create and deliver original content 52 weeks a year to a global audience. WWE is committed to family-friendly entertainment on its television programming, premium live events, digital media, and publishing platforms. WWE’s TV-PG programming can be seen in more than 1 billion homes worldwide in 25 languages through world-class distribution partners including NBCUniversal, FOX Sports, TNT Sport, Sony India and Rogers. The award-winning WWE Network includes all premium live events, scheduled programming and a massive video-on-demand library and is currently available in more than 180 countries. In the United States, NBCUniversal’s streaming service, Peacock, is the exclusive home to WWE Network. Additional information on WWE can be found at wwe.com and corporate.wwe.com.
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