ESPN+ is Now the Exclusive Home for UFC PPV Events, Expanding on $1.5B Rights Deal
UFC and ESPN announced today an agreement to make ESPN+, the network’s OTT service, the exclusive home to UFC PPV events through 2025. ESPN+ is now the single point of purchase for all of UFC’s PPV telecasts starting with UFC 236: HOLLOWAY vs. POIRIER 2 on April 12th. UFC PPV events sold through ESPN+ will include all bouts on the Main Event fight cards in both English and Spanish.
New ESPN+ subscribers will be able to bundle a UFC PPV event to a one-year subscription for just $79.99 (normally $129.99). Existing ESPN+ subscribers will be able to purchase UFC PPV events for $59.99 per event.
The new deal builds on $150 million per year rights deal with ESPN signed last year, following 7 years on FOX. Those rights brought 42 live events to ESPN with 20 of them exclusively on ESPN+. Additionally, ESPN+ will continue to air the preliminary fights for all UFC on ESPN Fight Night events, while UFC PPV events have their prelims air nationally on ESPN (English) and ESPN Deportes (Spanish).
In a statement, UFC President Dana White shared:
“Today’s announcement further establishes the strength of the partnership between UFC and ESPN. Now our fans will be able to watch all UFC events exclusively on ESPN platforms, including ESPN+, which is an innovative way to deliver fights to our young fan base. I couldn’t be more excited to work with ESPN for the next seven years. Together we’re going to do amazing things to help grow this sport.”
In their inaugural broadcast, ESPN announced that UFC Fight Night on ESPN+ drove 568,000 new subscribers to the service. While many of those were on free trial, the number is staggering given that the service announced that they had 1 Million subscribers in September.
The first UFC Fight Night on ESPN+ featured a PPV-worthy main card between Henry Cejudo, UFC Flyweight Champion, and T.J. Dillashaw, UFC Bantamweight Champion. The fight was originally supposed to headline UFC 233 PPV event.
In addition to UFC, ESPN’s direct-to-consumer OTT streaming service includes access to daily out-of-market NHL, MLB, MLS games, international soccer coverage, college sports, original shows, and the entire library of 30 for 30 content.
The service is compatible with most major streaming players including Amazon Fire TV, Apple TV, Roku, Android TV, gaming devices like PS4 and Xbox One, mobile devices on iOS, Android, and most major browsers. You can read our full review of the service here.