Bellator MMA launches in UK this summer on Viacom-owned VIVA

Photo by Esther Lin via MMA Fighting

Bellator MMA officials announced a television deal with Viacom-owned network VIVA on Thursday (June 6, 2013) that will reach viewers in the United Kingdom, expanding the organization's viewership to 116 countries and territories worldwide.

Newport Beach, CA. (June 6, 2013) - Bellator MMA will now be available on television for the first time to the many passionate mixed martial arts fans in the UK, as it was announced today by Bjorn Rebney, Bellator CEO and Kevin Kay, Spike TV President. Viacom's popular VIVA channel will begin airing live Bellator fights on Wednesday, June 19 as part of the MMA league's summer series tournament featuring a stacked card including King Mo, "Babalu" Sobral and War Machine. In September, VIVA will telecast Bellator MMA's 9th season.

Bellator's foray into the UK market increases their global reach to 116 countries and territories. Available in every one of the UK's 26 million TV households, VIVA has one of the highest profiles amongst 16 to 34-year-olds of any UK channel, with 50% of its audience comprised of that hard-to-reach demographic and one in four of that age group in the UK - 3.7 million viewers - tuning in to the channel each month. Bellator is the first mixed martial arts franchise to be televised on the channel.

"We are thrilled to finally bring the pure excitement of Bellator MMA to the legions of dedicated and knowledgeable mixed martial arts fans in the UK," remarked Rebney. "Our long awaited expansion into the UK, one of the world's MMA hot beds further illustrates our continued ascension in the MMA world.

"This deal is game changer in the UK, giving Bellator the widest and deepest distribution of any MMA promotion in the marketplace," said Kay.

Recently, Bellator MMA announced the signings of three of the UK's top MMA fighters, Martin Stapleton, Rob Sinclair and Paul Sass. With the VIVA deal in place, Bellator will continue to aggressively pursue top British fighting talent.

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