The UFC have today announced a three-year television deal with forthcoming channel BT Sport in the United Kingdom and Ireland. Beginning August 1st, this “ground-breaking deal” will replace the one currently in place with ESPN UK.
UFC fans: we are happy to annouce a 3-year ground breaking partnership with @btsport starting 1st August! Stay tuned for more details!
— UFC United Kingdom (@UFC_UK) May 7, 2013
Speaking at the announcement of the deal, Executive Vice President and Managing Director of UFC EMEA, said:
“This agreement is a landmark step in [the] UFC’s development in the UK as it will increase our exposure to much wider and more mainstream sporting audience. It means that the UK joins the USA, Canada, Australia and Brazil as one of our largest TV broadcast markets.
“BT Sport certainly shares our vision for the premium quality broadcast of elite performance sport for our UK audience and we’re very excited about the strategic partnership we’ve entered into. We look forward to working alongside them and showing a wider fan base how exciting and engaging the UFC is.”
Simon Green, the Head of BT Sport, added:
“We’re delighted to have signed this agreement with [the] UFC. We’ve said BT Sport will offer a wide range of sports that appeal to different audiences and we know that [the] UFC has a huge, committed fanbase in the UK and Ireland and we hope they will be excited about our plans the develop the coverage of the sport.”
Regarding the deal, BT Sport are set to absorb the current ESPN UK channel, which will go off air around July 31st once the deal has been completely finalized. Click HERE for some handy FAQs on the new BT Sport channel.
BT Sport have insisted that no changes will be made to current subscriptions to ESPN in the UK and Ireland, at least for the time being.