The UFC and Spike TV have jointly announced that they have agreed to a television extension through 2011.
The extension includes:
- Six additional season of The Ultimate Fighter (seasons 7 through 12). Two seasons of the series will air in 2008 and 2009 and one season will air in 2010 and 2011.
- Four UFC Fight Night events per year for the next three years for a total of twelve events.
- A new weekly live fight series will debut in 2010 and will be “a step above” UFC Fight Night events.
- 13 new episodes of UFC Unleashed will air in 2009, 2010, and 2011 for a total of 39 new episodes.
Continue reading for the complete announcement…
Spike TV, a division of MTV Networks, and the Ultimate Fighting Championship® (UFC®) organization have agreed to a new, three-year extension of their strategic partnership, it was announced jointly today by Kevin Kay, President, Spike TV and Dana White, President, Zuffa, LLC d/b/a Ultimate Fighting Championship. The deal maintains Spike TV as the basic cable home to the UFC, the premiere brand in mixed martial arts, the fastest growing sport in America, through 2011. The deal was brokered by the Endeavor Agency.The main components of the deal are:
• Seasons 9 through 12 of the highly successful reality series, “The Ultimate Fighter®.” The first five seasons of “The Ultimate Fighter” on Spike TV were seen by 93 million viewers. *
• 12 live fight cards, “UFC® Fight Nights™,” hosted by Joe Rogan and Mike Goldberg. Spike TV will telecast four per year.
• Two seasons of a new, weekly live fight series (details to be announced at a later date).
• 39 one-hour episodes of “UFC® Unleashed™,” hosted by Mike Goldberg, featuring the greatest fights in the history of the Ultimate Fighting Championship, many of them never seen before on basic cable. Spike TV will run 13 per year in ‘09, ’10, and ’11.
“With the tremendous success and the record ratings we have achieved over the years, I am very happy to have Spike TV as UFC’s cable partner,” said White. “I am excited to continue our relationship with the team that has supported UFC from the very beginning, and to have even greater success with all of our UFC programming on Spike TV.”
“We are proud to be the television home of the country’s hottest sports brand which is now firmly established as a major, regulated sports franchise with an ever-growing fan base,” said Kevin Kay, President, Spike TV. “It is a testament to the dedication and foresight of UFC President Dana White that the UFC has emerged, since its debut on Spike TV three years ago, as a must-have for viewers and advertisers alike.”In 2007, seven live UFC fights on Spike TV have averaged more young men in the coveted 18-34 demographic (869,000) on cable than the more established ‘major’ American sports of basketball, baseball, football, hockey, and NASCAR including:
62% more than the NLCS on TBS
143% more than the NBA playoffs on ESPN
24% more than the NBA playoffs on TNT
123% more than MLB Sunday Night baseball on ESPN
48% more than NASCAR on TNT
31% more than NASCAR on ESPN
81% more than the NFL on NFL Network
595 % more than the NHL Stanley Cup Finals on Versus
The sixth season of “The Ultimate Fighter” currently airs Wednesday nights at 10:00pm ET/PT and averages over 1.5 million viewers each week. Season seven begins production in January, 2008. Craig Piligian of Pilgrim Films and Television, Frank Fertitta III, Lorenzo Fertitta, Dana White of Zuffa, LLC, and Kevin Kay of Spike TV are the show’s executive producers. Brian J. Diamond, senior vice president, sports & specials, Spike TV is co-executive producer and Christopher Martello is executive in charge of production for Spike TV.
Spike TV is available in 96.1 million homes and is a division of MTV Networks. A unit of Viacom (NYSE: VIA, VIA.B), MTV Networks is one of the world’s leading creators of programming and content across all media platforms.