ONE Fighting Championship today announced details of the 'ONE Asia Summit' which will be held in Singapore from June 1st to 3rd and will be the largest event of its type in the history of Asian MMA. According to the press release,
150 of the most influential people in Asian MMA are invited for an all expenses paid trip to Singapore at the luxurious S$8 billion Marina Bay Sands, the world’s most expensive resort and casino, to join forces for the benefit of Asian MMA.
The other major announcement was that, after the success of the last ONE FC show at the Singapore Indoor Stadium which was an 8,000 sell out, the decision has been made to alter the date of the Malaysia show in order to switch to a bigger venue.
It had initially been scheduled to take place in Kuala Lumpur on May 25th with a couple of arenas with capacities of 2-3,000 under consideration. The strong ticket sales at ONE FC 'War of the Lions', as well as the overwhelmingly positive reaction from the fans in attendance encouraged ONE FC to move to book the biggest venue available, Stadium Negara.
It is an indoor stadium which has played host to concerts by the likes of Kylie Minogue and Bon Jovi and has a capacity of 10200. MMA is growing rapidly in Malaysia with new camps and promotions springing up almost every month and it is likely that a few local fighters such as Adam Kayoom and Pete Davis will be on the card at ONE FC 'Destiny of Warriors' which is set for June 23rd.
The 'ONE FC Network' was founded last October and is an 'exclusive partnership' between multiple MMA promotions including Dream, Deep, Road FC, URCC, Cage Fighting Championships, Malaysia Fighting Championships and Full Contact Championships as well as other partners such as sponsors, broadcasters, officials and MMA camps.
It has been a cornerstone of ONE FC's success and the most recent show prominently featured fighters from Dream, Deep and the URCC. The presence of the likes of Tatsuya Kawajiri and Masakuze Imanari on the card at the Singapore Indoor Stadium was a good example of the potential benefits to fighters and fans of the ONE FC Network.
This will be the first time that the entire ONE FC Network has gathered together and CEO / Owner Victor Cui was quoted in the press release as follows:
In the last six months we have completely changed the game for the sport of mixed martial arts in Asia. This is a result of the synergistic efforts within the ONE FC Network and the outstanding support from the network’s exclusive partners. My vision is to create the best MMA network in Asia by choosing strategic partnerships made up of only the best promotions, gyms, sponsors, and media companies in the region. The ONE Asia MMA Summit 2012 is an opportunity for us to come together to share ideas, harness the phenomenal growth of MMA in Asia and create opportunities for all
The agenda for ONE Asia MMA Summit 2012 will include presentations by industry leaders, TV broadcasters, international sponsors, leading gym owners, MMA media influencers and international MMA stars all within the luxurious surroundings of the most expensive casino resort in the world. It will be an opportunity for all the major players in the region to come together for the very first time with all their costs covered by ONE FC.
When ONE FC was launched the budget was described as being the biggest ever seen in Asian MMA and it appears that a chunk of this cash is being dedicated to building long term relationships with all the various stakeholders in the region. I would estimate the cost of paying for 150 people to spend three nights at the Marina Bay Sands as being in the region of 150,000 USD and the flights will push the price considerably higher..
ONE FC signed a ten year media partnership with ESPN Star Sports earlier this year which guarantees that the sports broadcaster will air its content in 24 Asian countries. There will be numerous media partners present at the summit and it is possible other promotions will be able to use the opportunity to broker TV deals.
Road FC has already benefited from being part of the ONE FC Network by booking Brian Choi, Vuyisile Colossa and Andrew Leone to appear in Korea and with so many matchmakers spending time together we could see more of this type of inter-promotional movement after the summit
There will be representatives from almost every sphere of Asian MMA present, ranging from promoters to sponsors to (hopefully!) the media. It is probably the most ambitious and expensive summit in MMA history and nothing like this has ever been organized in Asia before.
There will always competition between fighters, between camps and even between promotions but if the sport of MMA grows then everyone will benefit and putting so many influential people in one place could greatly accelerate the already remarkable rate of this growth in Asia.
With the change of date for the Kuala Lumpur card the ONE FC schedule for the remainder of 2012 now looks like this:
June 1st-3rd 'ONE Asia Summit'
Marina Bay Sands, Singapore
June 23rd, ONE FC 'Destiny of Warriors
Stadium Negara, Kuala Lumpur
September 1st ONE FC 3
Philippines (venue TBA)
October 6th ONE FC 4
Singapore Indoor Stadium
* negotiations are underway for additional events