UFC's new owners plan major job cuts

One source has compared the mood at its Las Vegas office to a "morgue"

Conor McGregor

Image: Isaac Brekken / AP/Press Association Images

Just over three months after WME-IMG purchased the UFC - the world's leading MMA promotion - in a deal worth more than $4bn, it seems that changes are afoot within the organisation.

"UFC is working closely with its new ownership group to evaluate areas of the business for functional overlap. Throughout this process, we will be making difficult decisions to lay off employees," the UFC told Newstalk.

"These decisions are a direct reflection of being able to leverage WME-IMG’s deep network of global resources to the long-term benefit of UFC. The full transition will be completed by the end of this year," the organisation continued.

PA

MMA Fighting reports that officials from the company have confirmed that 15% of its workforce will be made redundant.

Between 60 and 80 workers are expected to be let go from the organisation, which employs some 400 people at offices in Los Angeles, Toronto, London, Sao Paulo and Singapore.

MMA journalist Ariel Helwani reported that a number of UFC employees have spoken to him about poor morale within the company, with one source comparing the Las Vegas office to a "morgue."

Manchester City Football Club's former chief executive Gary Cook has been the most high profile executive to be let go. He served as the UFC's chief global branding officer and head of international business development.

The company's chief match maker Joe Silva also left the company of his own accord, shortly after the sale was completed.

WME-IMG is a US talent agency which is backed by private equity firms. It represents such famous names as Justin Timberlake, Gisele Bundchen, Peyton Manning, Maria Sharapova and Taylor Swift, as well as some of the UFC's leading talents, including Ronda Rousey.