With the announced sale of the UFC, WWE stocks immediately went up over 2% and are trading at $19.97 a piece at time of this writing.
Earlier this morning, the UFC issued a press release announcing that WME | IMG will be acquiring the organization for a reported $4 billion. The Fertitta brothers bought the UFC in 2001 for just $2 million.
Once the sale is approved, Lorenzo Fertitta will step down from CEO and Chairman of the UFC and he and his brother will retain a minority stake in the company. Dana White, the company’s President and the go-to guy for day-to-day operations, will keep his role and the minority stake as well.
WME | IMG’s strategic investment partners include leading global investment firms Silver Lake and KKR who have a track record of growing strong business enterprises in diverse industries together. Running WME | IMG are Ariel Emanuel and Patrick Whitesell.
Major media outlets picked up the big sale and at one point CNN.COM mistakenly had a front page headline that read “WWE buys UFC for $4B.”