After shutting its doors in October of 2008 following its inability to secure additional funding to keep the promotion afloat, select assets of ProElite -- the parent company of EliteXC -- were auctioned off to the California-based Strikeforce promotion, leaving nothing left but the bare bones.
Now those bones have apparently reanimated and come back to life like one of the skeletons from Jason and the Argonauts. Of course they had a little help from the gang at Stratus Media Group, Inc., who gobbled up the remains of ProElite with hopes of cashing in on a suddenly lucrative MMA market.
They may not have the video library, the fighter contracts or the ratings machine known as Kimbo Slice -- but they don't have the "spend first, ask questions later" policy that doomed EliteXC either.
From Paul Feller, President and CEO of Stratus:
"This acquisition allows Stratus and ProElite to combine forces at the management and board levels of both organizations. ProElite has a globally recognized brand. We believe that by combining select key experienced management executives, who made ProElite the immediate success it was, with new top executives with demonstrated successes in conducting and televising MMA events internationally and sufficient capital, that we will achieve the brand's strategy for global growth and success. With this combination, we can start focusing on strengthening and repositioning ProElite events and the brand, planning a series of MMA events that we believe will bring excitement to the MMA market, fans and our shareholders and establish ProElite as a leading international MMA company."
Of course there is a long way to go before ProElite (or anyone not named UFC) can become a "leading International MMA company," but it's not unrealistic to think that a sound business model and responsible spending can produce a successful promotion.
My only question for this and any new mixed martial arts endeavor: Is there enough talent to go around? And no, Da-Da 5000 doesn't count.
For more on the history surrounding the fall of ProElite click here.