UFC 153 PPV: 340-410K buys

October 28, 2012

Earlier this week Dave Meltzer’s Wrestling Observer reported that the preliminary PPV rate for UFC 153 is in the range of 340,000 to 410,000 buys.  This would make UFC 153 the highest rated PPV in Brazil in recent history.

UFC 134 – 335,000 buys (Silva vs. Okami main event)
UFC 142 – 235,000 buys (Aldo vs. Mendes main event)
UFC 147 – 190,000 buys (Franklin vs. W. Silva main event)
UFC 153 – ~340K-410K buys (Silva vs. Bonnar main event)

Payout Perspective:

If the numbers hold true, this should be considered a successful card considering the amount of shuffling that went on to keep this card together.  Moreover, the addition of Silva and Big Nog probably meant more PPV buys than an Aldo-Koch or an Aldo-Edgar card.  Even though Edgar is a popular fighter, his main event PPV card history does not equate to buys.

19 Responses to “UFC 153 PPV: 340-410K buys”

  1. Sampson Simpson on October 28th, 2012 2:44 PM

    Highest rated PPV in Brazil or highest PPV buyrate for an event showcased FROM Brazil?

  2. Brain Smasher on October 28th, 2012 11:44 PM

    Yeah might want to change “in Brazil” to “from Brazil” just to avoid confusion. But i think pretty much everyone understand what is meant.

  3. Tim on October 29th, 2012 12:29 AM

    Interesting to note that PPV buys that a few years ago would have been conisdered a flop is now pretty good. The golden era is def over.

  4. Sampson Simpson on October 29th, 2012 3:17 AM

    Pretty much so Tim. The end is coming…

  5. Weezy02 on October 29th, 2012 3:19 AM

    It’s a weird trajectory for the UFC and a classic example of how perspective plays a role. For example, prior to 2006 the UFC had only reached 200,000 PPV buys (a healthy buyrate) a handful of times. Then they explode into the stratosphere where they’re hitting grand slams almost every time they’re up to bat. Then in 2011 they level off at where they’re at now, averaging around 400,000 PPV buys per show. The irony is that public perception and the perception in the PPV industry (and event the boxing industry) is completely different. UFC buyrates are considered big-time money makers for PPV companies and for Zuffa yet, because they’ve decreased about 32% from their record-breaking heights in 2010, the public perception is that they’re “struggling”. It’s an interesting phenomenon to observe. So basically you have the “sky is falling” side and the “things are great” side. So which side is correct? Based on what I’ve observed, and what I hear from industry folks, both have a bit of validity. It is true that average buyrates have come back to Earth. It’s also true that the average UFC PPV buyrate would be considered a strong PPV buyrate in any other walk of the PPV world. Again, I suppose it depends on one’s perspective. Try this exercise: List out the UFC average PPV buyrates since Zuffa took over and place them on a line graph in EXCEL. What you’ll see really puts the entire pictrue in perspective for you. It shows the exponential growth over time and now the plateauing in the past two years. It shows that UFC buyrates went from “hardly a factor in the PPV landscape” to “simply incredible PPV performances” to level off at their current “very strong PPV performances”. Again, it’s perspective. There is ammunition for both arguments, I suppose. But at the end of the day the money still rolls in.

  6. Sampson Simpson on October 29th, 2012 9:32 AM

    You can also couple that same line with UFC overhead and marketing expenses which have risen drastically in order to produce those results. Now that the costs have grown based on projections of boom times continuing… Thats where the problem arises.

    These buyrates dont happen out of thin air.

    UFC spends 100x what boxing promoters do on marketing their PPVS. #fact

  7. Machiel Van on October 29th, 2012 9:54 AM

    The wording doesn’t need to be changed since UFC PPVs aren’t sold in Brazil. It should be obvious what “highest PPV in Brazil” means. They watch it for free on Globo.

  8. Sampson Simpson on October 29th, 2012 2:10 PM

    What is Globosat Combate? UFC 134? Brazilian PPV?


  9. Weezy02 on October 29th, 2012 2:54 PM

    I believe it’s the subscription channel that Globo owns. If my understanding is correct, they air the entire fight card live on Globosat Combate, and air the last two bouts on a 30 minute delay on the big network, Globo Rede.

  10. Machiel Van on October 29th, 2012 2:59 PM

    Correct link: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/UFC_134

    Globosat Combate is a combat sports channel owned by Globosat, a Brazilian cable and satellite TV company. Contrary to the oddly worded Wikipedia article, Globosat Combate does not sell PPV content, but a few subscription based channels are available on the network.

  11. Machiel Van on October 29th, 2012 3:00 PM

    *available as part of the Globosat network.

  12. Sampson Simpson on October 29th, 2012 3:07 PM

    Thats wonderful since it wasnt so OBVIOUS before…

  13. Brain Smasher on October 29th, 2012 4:31 PM


    These numbers are very good even compared to the UFC’s big years. Non US events have always taken a hit over seas. What you say may be true with normal PPVs today. But this event was a huge success by any standards The only non North American event to beat this event was the Super Card the UFC ran in Adu Dahbi. UFC 112 in April 2010. It had Anderson Silva and Bj Penn both defendign their belts and Matt Hughes. 3 big Draws and it barely beat this event.

    UFC 99 Germany 6/13/2009 360,000
    UFC 93 Ireland 1/17/2009 350,000
    UFC 85 England 6/7/2008 215,000
    UFC 80 England 1/19/2008 225,000
    UFC 72 Ireland 6/16/2007 200,000

  14. Sampson Simpson on October 29th, 2012 5:11 PM

    Cute numbers. Cute.

    Chavez-Martinez did 475,000 buys when counter-programmed heavily.

  15. michael on October 29th, 2012 11:31 PM

    …and the Prince Charles Lady Diana wedding did 70 million around the world

  16. Diego on October 30th, 2012 11:11 AM

    At these numbers I suspect the UFC is a viable and profitable business. It may not be growing PPVs in the US, but even at current levels they are making money (I think). Add to that any international expansion and it’s still a very lucrative business and isn’t going anywhere for the time being.

    The list of people who can command big PPVs, whether in boxing or MMA is relatively small. But the UFC brand can still give mediocre MMA events a boost.

  17. Sampson Simpson on October 30th, 2012 1:47 PM

    Domestically boxing has the following match-ups that can draw around 500k on PPV or higher:

    Any Pacquiao fight
    Any Mayweather fight
    Martinez- Chavez

    Internationally boxing is and has been already well established and developed financially

  18. Weezy02 on October 31st, 2012 1:52 AM

    Sorry for the digression, but just wanted to say that some interesting news will be coming out soon regarding HBO Boxing and Showtime Boxing budgets for 2013. Stay tuned.

  19. Sampson Simpson on October 31st, 2012 3:12 AM

    They must be doubling up…

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