Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) is a company that has undergone significant change over recent years -- from signing a landmark deal with FOX in late 2011 to launching its own Internet-based subscription service, Fight Pass, at this beginning of this past year.
With all of that change has come a few growing pains for the world's leading mixed martial arts (MMA) organization. Ratings and estimated pay per view (PPV) buyrates are less consistent than they once were, with a lower basement-level number being established for both PPV and television since the move to FOX.
However, there have also been some fantastic numbers as of late. The Chris Weidman vs. Anderson Silva and Ronda Rousey vs. Miesha Tate co-headlined UFC 168 did an impressive 1.1 million PPV buys, generating a blockbuster live gate of $6.2 million.
So how has all of this change affected UFC's bottom line? Well, to hear company president Dana White tell it, business is still booming.
In fact, White revealed in a recent interview with Financial Times that UFC is worth something to the tune of $3.5 billion. That's up considerably from the $2 billion Lorenzo Fertitta claimed in a New York Times interview several years ago, suggesting UFC is the most valuable sports franchise on the planet.
With UFC attempting to make further inroads into international markets in 2014 and beyond, it is certainly worth keeping an eye on how this number changes over the coming years.