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Nent extends UFC rights in Nordic territories

Media company Nordic Entertainment (Nent) Group has agreed a multi-year extension to its rights deal with the Ultimate Fighting Championship, the Endeavor-owned mixed martial arts promotion.

Nent will retain exclusive UFC rights in the Nordic region. All UFC events will continue to be shown live on Nent’s streaming service, Viaplay, with selected events available on free-to-air television channels and through pay-per-view.

UFC numbered events and UFC Fight Nights will be streamed live on Viaplay. Preliminary and early preliminary bouts will also be shown live every time a Nordic fighter is involved. Local fighters include Makwan Amirkhani (Finland), Nicolas Dalby (Denmark), Jack Hermansson (Norway/Sweden), Ilir Latifi (Sweden) and Mark O. Madsen (Denmark).

The first numbered event of the new contract will be UFC 246: ‘McGregor v Cowboy’ on January 18, headlined by the long-anticipated return of former two-division champion Conor McGregor in a welterweight bout with Donald ‘Cowboy’ Cerrone. This event will be shown on a pay-per-view basis in all Nordic countries.

Kim Mikkelsen, Nent group head of sport, said today (Thursday): “With more than 300 million fans worldwide, UFC is one of the fastest-growing sports brands in the world, and local competitors are household names across the Nordic region. Our UFC coverage includes high-quality, local-language commentary from every gala and has thrilled both new and established fight fans.”

The UFC deal comes after Nent this month said it will take a SEK700m (€66.3m/$73.4m) one-off charge in the fourth quarter relating to job cuts and write-downs of free-to-air television content as it continues a move to a new operating model with a renewed focus on Viaplay.