There will be fewer partners involved in the UFC in the very near future.
On Wednesday, WME-IMG — the agency that purchased the UFC last year for over $4 billion — just received another $1.1 billion in funding.
The cash infusion was provided by a Canadian pension fund as well as a Singaporean sovereign fund that brings WME-IMG’s total value up from $5.5 billion to $6.3 billion according to an initial report from Variety.
The additional $1.1 billion will fund potential new acquisitions for the company, it will allow some senior management and investors to get cash out as well as allow WME-IMG to buy out some minority partners currently involved with the UFC.
When the UFC sold last year there were several minority partners still involved including UFC president Dana White, Frank and Lorenzo Fertitta (despite selling the majority of the company) as well as Flash Entertainment, the Abu Dhabi based group that purchased a 10-percent stake in the UFC in 2010.
While no public statement has been made regarding the funding, it would appear Flash Entertainment is the most likely owner that WME-IMG is looking to buy out with this influx of cash.
The new funding could also stave off WME-IMG going public, which has been a long rumored development for the powerhouse Hollywood agency for the past couple of years. The cash acquired could allow senior management and partners to cash out for money now rather than waiting for an initial public offering.
Of course, WME-IMG could still go public at some point down the road but as of now this new cash injection could keep them as a private company for the time being.