In a “transformative” deal, the Professional Fighters League announced that it had acquired mixed-martial arts rival Bellator.
Paramount retains a minor stake in Bellator which was launched in 2008.
PFL announced that the Bellator “will continue” and will host a PFL Champions Vs Bellator Champions match in 2024.
Donn Davis is the founder and Chairman of PFL. He said, “PFL has become a world-class MMA powerhouse.”
Our Bellator purchase turbocharges PFL’s mission to innovate and lead the industry. “
Peter Murray and Davis, PFL’s CEO, will continue to run the company.
Since its launch in 2017, the PFL has tried to innovate in mixed martial arts. It uses a system based on a league, with each match earning points before the season-ending playoffs. The prize is $1m (PS800k).
The PFL, Bellator and other organizations are hoping to compete with the UFC. They have joined forces and now, “have rosters which are 30 percent fighters who independently are ranked top 25 in the world for their respective weight classes”.
PFL is planning to introduce a Bellator International Champions Series consisting of 8 fights each year in the major cities around the world.
According to Murray, the combined PFL-Bellator fighter roster is second to none.
We can’t believe we are bringing MMA fans the event they asked for – the best vs. best PFL Champions vs Bellator Champions Mega-Event. “
Bellator has joined the PFL League Season and PFL Super Fights as one of the five live fighting franchises in the PFL. The other four are the PFL Challenger Series, PFL International Leagues, and PFL PPV.
The former UFC heavyweight champ Francis Ngannou will be part of PFL PPV Super Fights, but the Cameroonian has yet to debut. He recently was beaten by WBC heavyweight Boxing Champion Tyson Fury in a highly controversial decision.
In August, a company that is owned by the Public Investment Fund of Saudi Arabia (PIF), purchased a minor stake .
A deal between PIF and its subsidiary SRJ Sports Investments will lead to the creation of a Super Fight Division in Saudi Arabia, as well as an MMA League.
According to PFL, the first Super Fight will be held in 2024.