With UFC 151’s cancellation now in the aftermath stages, the financial deficit from the cards fallout are now becoming apparent. Regardless of who’s at fault for the lost card, the damage has been done to all involved parties.
During a recent interview on UFC Tonight, UFC President Dana White admitted that the UFC lost $2 million in advertising alone for the card. A source in the organization tells MMAFighting that the losses are estimated at least at $20 million. Of course they are not the only ones to take a hit.
Fighters of the card do take a loss of income, with the UFC looking to move the roster to a near event or receiving partial compensation. The businesses involved in the event such as Vegas Hotels, restaurants, clubs, taxis have lost the potential income, but worst is the cable companies involved. The conservative estimate is being put out at $7.5 million in losses from television distributors involved, which was also calculated from pairing UFC 152, as they usually do with events close to each other; which build off each other.
Because of the location of the card in the worlds party hub of Las Vegas, fans flock from all around the world for the Vegas cards. The local economy as a whole was expected to reach over $20 million, as they average from an given pay-per-view event in town.
Exact numbers for Zuffa directly are not public information as they are a private company, but the event was expected to pull a live gate of $2.5 million and even more with merchandise involved in the event. The variables of sponsors is also unknown but is indefinitely in the millions as well.
One could argue that the headliner Jon Jones being moved over to UFC 152 could make-up for some of the deficit, but to give you an idea on the impact as of recent, only $200,000 has been made in ticket sales since the announcement. With past data in hand, it’s a sure bet that should Sonnen had been the replacement instead of Belfort, the organization would of had more of the losses recouped.
If we throw in losses to the Las Vegas economy and those of the cable and satellite industry, and when all is said and done, you are probably talking closer to $40 million in losses, and that’s not taking into account any bad will when it comes to UFC fans and for the Jon Jones brand going forward.