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Endeavor Eyeing Up 100% UFC Stake

E
ntertainment conglomerate, Endeavor Group Holdings, has revealed plans to purchase the remaining 49.9% stake of the UFC as part of its second attempt to go public with an initial public offering (IPO).

According to the preliminary prospectus filed by Endeavor with the Securities and Exchange Commission, Endeavor will use at least USD$1.75 billion of the USD$1.768 billion to purchase UFC shares from the competition’s minority shareholders.

Endeavor initially purchased a majority stake of the UFC in 2016, as part of a three-party deal with KKR and Silver Lake to purchase the UFC for USD$4 billion.

As part of the report, Endeavor announced it was bringing in Elon Musk to its board of directors ahead of its second attempt at an IPO, with the company giving approval to request an IPO for the UFC after Endeavor is made public.

According to the New York Post, the UFC accounted for 80% of Endeavor’s overall profit in 2020, largely thanks to the early return of the competition during the COVID-19 lockdown last year.

In the preliminary prospectus, Endeavor said in a statement: “We own, operate, or represent more than 800 events annually.”

“[These include] live sports events covering more than 15 sports across more than 25 countries, international fashion weeks, art fairs, and music, culinary, and lifestyle festivals.

“While we believe the long-term value of premium intellectual property, content, and experiences is enduring, the near-term impact to our business as a result of COVID-19 has been significant.

“We experienced disruption across our business units and geographies given the hiatus of live sports and entertainment events coupled with film and television series production stoppages and the interruption of the school year and sports camp schedule,” Endeavor said.

The decision to go public follows Endeavor posting a loss of USD$625.3 million in 2020.