Professional Fighters League (PFL) announced an international distribution partnership with Telesport Group in Russia on August 4, 2020. The former is the first organization ever to present MMA through a regular season, playoffs and championship format while the latter is Russia’s largest operator in sports marketing.
There are several PFL athletes fighting out of Russia. Among them are undefeated Dagestani fighter Movlid “Killer” Khaybulaev and Denis “The Russian Bogatyr” Goltsov of St. Petersburg.
Established in 1994, Telesport is a rights holder to several federations and leading national and international sporting events, including the Olympic Games through 2024, the UEFA Euro 2020 and the Russian Football Cup, among others. An expert in sports advertisement and sponsorships and complex marketing strategies execution, the company now adds premium MMA content to its portfolio with the PFL.
As part of the multi-year agreement, Telesport will broadcast live PFL regular season, playoffs and championship events. PFL programming on Telesport will also include classic fights from PFL’s vault, including Khaybulaev’s viral flying knee knockout of Damon Jackson, Magomed Magomedkerimov’s million-dollar performance in the 2018 PFL welterweight championship and Ali Isaev’s undefeated run to the 2019 PFL heavyweight championship.
Original programming will also be featured. It is created by PFL Studios, a fully integrated global media division of the PFL producing original MMA content for all platforms including television, digital and mobile.
“Professional Fighters League has experienced tremendous domestic and international growth and with fighters from 25 countries around the world, we are committed to delivering our brand of thrilling, high-quality, differentiated MMA action to a global audience,” PFL chief executive officer Peter Murray stated. “Russia is a country that has consistently produced elite MMA talent, many of whom have made a name for themselves in the United States with the PFL. We’re excited to partner with Telesport and provide a rabid fan base of MMA enthusiasts with premium, year-round MMA content and the opportunity to support homegrown talent.”
PFL is working with global distribution agency Fighting Spirit on the league’s international media rights distribution plan and partnerships. It also recently hired Loren Mack of New York, USA as its vice president of corporate communications.