John Moody Discusses The Regional Game

July 10, 2008

John Moody of and discusses the NorthEast market, the online MMA media scooping broadcast, and other MMA media musings.

Graffight Goes To The Fights

July 8, 2008

If you are a regular reader of our blog, you may have seen us mention Gary Ibarra and his Graffight Apparel company. Gary has a great blog site that is detailing his adventures as a start-up in the MMA apparel business, it’s worth a read. This past week-end was a big one for Gary, as he looked to present his product to some of the movers and shakers in the industry while at UFC 86, read all about it here.

Uproar Magazine Follow-up

July 4, 2008

As a follow-up on our recent MMA Start-up piece on Uproar Magazine, here is some local video on the business:

MMA Start-Up: Ringstars

July 1, 2008

MMA is often looked at as very much a post-modern sport. MMA has created their on paradigms instead of relying on the old paradigms offered by the mainstream sports. An example of this is the use of reality television like The Ultimate Fighter to take the sport to another level.

Now others want to take the sport even further into the future. One such venture is the new MMA start-up Ringstars: Fighters Online. Ringstars is a plan is to use the internet as a new tool for fighters, promoters, and others involved in the business. A brief description of their model:

FightersOnline, Inc. will provide every fighter, trainer, manager, and promoter in the world with access to databases of prospective opponents, promoters, venues, managers, trainers, and fans. A fighter will be able to challenge any number of fighters online. As challenges are accepted, matches will be auctioned. New revenue models, proprietary features, and an exclusive digital fight channel will provide fighters with an unprecedented share in the pay-per-view, live gate, subscription, and advertising markets.

This model may become increasingly viable as content migrates from television to the internet via sites like TidalTV and others.

MMA Start-Up: Uproar Magazine

June 26, 2008

A week ago I posted on monetizing your MMA passion by highlighting Garry Ibarra and his Graffight MMA clothing line. This week’s example of making your passion your career can be found in the new upstart MMA magazine Uproar. Uproar is a MMA magazine focusing on the MMA scene in Hawaii. Uproar is the brainchild of Brittany Yap and Hanalei Jaber. Both were avid fans of the local MMA scene but felt they were being underserved. The Honolulu Advertiser explains:

As their interest grew they found it difficult to find local MMA information in Hawaii, because it was mostly unorganized or nonexistent. A year ago they decided to fix that problem by doing the research themselves and came up with a business plan for the magazine. Aside from providing fight information the couple sees Uproar magazine as a way to promote new fighters, freelance writers, and fitness related businesses in Hawaii. “We want the magazine to act as a platform for people-a way to get exposure,” says Yap. The magazine will include profiles about local fighters and ring girls, health and nutritional information, and details on training centers.

That is the key in any business…. finding a constituency that isn’t being served and filling that need. You can also check out Uproar Online. It is a pretty interesting concept, a micro magazine looking to focus on a regional scene as opposed to a national one like Ultimate Grappling or Fight! Magazine. The magazine is looking to publish on a quarterly basis during it’s initial phase.

Monetizing your passion

June 18, 2008

Henry David Thoreau once wrote “The mass of men lead lives of quiet desperation”, or as the movie Fight Club put it we’re “slaves with white collars, working jobs we hate so we can buy stuff we don’t need.” Lots of us who follow mixed martial arts do so, but with a muted involvement, so it is always encouraging to see someone seeking to leap into the fray and make a go at monetizing their passion. The sport is still early enough in it’s development that the barriers of entry to the market are somewhat low.

Gary Ibarra over at Graffight Apparel is one such fellow who is making a go of it. Gary is doing a blog detailing the start-up phase of his line of apparel aimed at the mixed martial arts lifestyle, and the blog gives nice insight into what motivates someone to get into the market, what some of the headaches can be, and all the logistics involved in starting up. It makes for an interesting read for the business-minded among us.

Chuck Looking To Ramp Up MMAJacked

June 11, 2008

The Iceman Chuck Liddell has made several moves recently to branch out his empire, including the launching of IcemanRx and MMAJacked. IcemanRx, The Iceman’s supplement company, gained some brand notoriety recently, sponsoring BJ Penn at UFC 84. MMAJacked, a mixed-martial arts lifestyle brand owned by Liddell, also looks to boost it’s profile with the addition of Karen Diamond of Karen Diamond & Associates Inc. Diamond has 25 years experience in the licensing industry and will look to boost the profile of MMAJacked through various licensing opportunities.

As Chuck enters the twilight of his fighting career, he is taking the necessary steps to make a living after the last bell rings. Randy Couture is another athlete being very proactive in exploiting these business opportunities. The UFC doesn’t have a 401-K or a pension fund, so the younger fighters would be wise to follow the example of The Iceman and The Natural in providing for their own future.

News Wrap

May 7, 2008

  • UFC Tackles Long Term Growth Issues – The last five pay-per-view events have produced three of the company’s top ten events according to Dave Meltzer. UFC 79, 81, and 83 all drew between 525,000-650,000 buys and at $44.95. UFC 79 and 83 also produced the second and third largest gates in company history.
  • Golden Boy Sticking to Boxing – Oscar de La Hoya recently said that Golden Boy will stick to boxing when asked about MMA.
  • Viacom CEO Praises Iron Ring – Q1 profits for Viacom were up 33%. CEO Philippe Dauman said, “content creation is our central mission and our ongoing investments in programming are paying off as we see our television ratings continue to improve. Successful new programming across our networks during the first quarter included MTV’s Randy Jackson Presents: America’s Best Dance Crew, TV Land’s High School Reunion and BET’s Iron Ring among others, which joined new seasons of several proven audience favorites.”
  • Another Affliction Deal Falls Through – Negotiations with HDNet have reportedly fallen through. The promotion is now less than two months from its proposed first show and without a venue or television partner.
  • UFC Targets Show for Latino Audience – El Octagono will debut on Galavision as the UFC attempts to expand MMA’s demographic reach outside of 18-34 white males.
  • WWE Q1 Results – Wrestlemania XXIV produced $31.3 million in revenue and $7.1 million in profits ($4.6 million net). The event drew 1,058,000 buys (including international).

Fight Promoter U

April 8, 2008

Renown fight promoter Roy Englebrecht is now accepting enrollments for the fifth session of his famous Fight Promoter University which will take place November 21-24 in Irvine, California. Scheduled speakers include:

  • Roy Englebrecht – owner of California’s third largest boxing promotions company and former COO of Golden Boy Promotions.
  • Richard Schaefer – CEO of Golden Boy Promotions.
  • Armando Garcia – Executive Officer of the California State Athletic Commission

Click here for more information.

Affliction Update

April 2, 2008 has received unconfirmed reports that Affliction’s promotional effort will move forward despite the collapse of a potential partnership with Golden Boy. The company’s first show is now believed to be tentatively scheduled for July in Houston. Originally the promotion, with Golden Boy, was rumored to be targeting a June debut in Las Vegas.

The promotion is rumored to have signed a number of major fighters to non-exclusive contracts, although none have been announced, lucrative enough that multiple sources have told that the payroll of an event featuring all of the company’s contracted fighters could far exceed the average UFC payroll.

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