Univision Buys Big Stake In Hispanic MMA Company Combate Global

Univision Communications has enjoyed a long-term partnership in the past with Campbell McLaren and Combate Global. It now owns a “significant share” of McLaren’s Hispanic MMA franchise. It is betting that it will grow even more under McLaren and Televisa -Univision’s combined leadership. The deal is effective immediately. Terms were not disclosed.

Many of them will be broadcast from Univision’s studios in Miami, Florida.

“Univision and Combate Global teamed up in 2018 to create a whole new audience for MMA. McLaren of Combate Global, the CEO, said that these content-hungry fans, along with our dynamic athletes, are the future of MMA. The agreement will “further consolidate” a strong partnership.

Juan Carlos Rodriguez (president of Univision’s Sports Enterprises) stated, “This investment represents the first step towards Univision’s broader strategy for delivering more exciting, live fight sports to our audience.” Combate Global was initially called “Combate Americas.”

McLaren saw an opportunity to grow mixed martial arts among Hispanics and promoted events. McLaren realized from the beginning that he needed broadcast partners to establish a popular franchise. Univision was not his only stop.

Combate Americas was initially a reality series on cable network mun2 before moving to Azteca America and Telemundo. It landed at its current destination, 2018.

McLaren discussed how celebrities and media made an excellent promotion method for his franchise in a 2019 interview. “We are using media, mainly TV, to make it real, get eyes, and all the promotion that goes along with it. “We also used the power and celebrity of Nacho and Daddy Yankee to make Combate seem real very quickly,” he stated at the time. “That’s what sets us apart from the rest. Many MMA clubs start with live events. We are primarily a media products and content company.”

His strategy to make the content as accessible as possible via Univision’s multiplatform ecosystem, as well as becoming the only MMA sports franchise to be programmed on free to air, cable TV, and online platforms, paid dividends. The average Combate event has attracted 425,000 Total viewers 2+ in the U.S. since its inception on Univision. It is the highest-rated Spanish-language programming within its time slot. According to Nielsen data, the July 23 event attracted 543,000 Total viewers 2+, which was the second-highest audience ever and the largest since April 13, 2018.

“Our growth in TV and social media has been incredible. McLaren stated that OTT deals worldwide are our future in 2019.

This aligns with Univision’s forward-looking investments into streaming.

Wade Davis, CEO of Univision, announced the launch of PrendeTV, an ad-free streaming company. Univision announced in June the launch of a global streaming service.

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Adam Collins
Adam writes about technology, business and economics. With master's degree in Economics, he's presented six papers in international conferences. As a solivagant in the constant state of fernweh, curiosity is the main weapon in his arsenal.

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