Eleven Sports acquires UFC rights in UK
September 27, 2018
By Nik Roseveare
Eleven Sports and UFC have signed a new broadcast partnership for the UK and Ireland starting in January 2019. The global sports provider has secured the rights to all 42 live UFC events in 2019, as well as over 150 hours of UFC original and archive programming in a multi-year agreement.
UFC Fight Nights will be shown live on Eleven Sports, whilst Eleven will have the option to make some events available in partnership with other broadcast platforms – which could include BT Sport, the current holder of the UFC broadcast rights whose deal expires this December.
“UFC has become a massive brand which has built a hugely dedicated and engaged following over 25 years, making it a perfect fit for our fan centric strategy,” commented Danny Menken, Group Managing Director, Eleven Sports. “We are a big supporter of combat sports across our global markets and the fresh and innovative approach that we have taken with our properties has been very successful. We are looking forward to creating the same added value for the legions of MMA fans in the UK and Ireland.”
“We have worked very successfully with ELEVEN SPORTS in Belgium and Luxembourg and we are looking forward to extending our partnership here in the UK and Ireland,” added David Shaw, UFC Senior Vice President, International and Content. “The UK and Ireland are amongst UFC’s strongest markets globally and with ELEVEN SPORTS making a significant impact here, it made perfect sense to partner with them to showcase our thrilling product to our loyal and passionate fans.”
UFC is the latest major sports rights property acquired by ELEVEN SPORTS, following the addition of top flight football leagues, LaLiga (Spain), Serie A (Italy), Eredivisie (Netherlands), Chinese Super League (from 2019) and Allsvenskan (Sweden) – all exclusively live in the UK and Ireland for the next three seasons.
All the UFC action will be distributed on Eleven’s online streaming platform. Fans can also watch on traditional TV screens by casting on Google Chromecast.