“This expansion speaks to the international appeal of UFC’s brand” – UFC President, Dana White.
“From our athletes to our fan base, we have seen significant growth throughout international markets. We consider Asia as the birth place of Mixed Martial Arts, so we are thrilled that UFC GYM is now expanding into this region; bringing our signature MMA styles of training and fitness to our fans in South East Asia.”
Right as UFC has recently made waves internationally with news of its USD 4 billion sale to WME-IMG, marking the largest transaction in sports history, comes more news of growth and expansion.
UFC Gym, the fitness gym franchise division of UFC, is set to announce its first, official expansion into Asia with a $15,000,0000 USD investment led by its new partners in the region, CMG.Asia.
The country of choice may surprise you. While markets in Asia such as Japan, Hong Kong, Thailand and the Philippines may be much more developed, economically and in regards to UFC and overall Mixed Martial Arts, the destination to welcome the first UFC Gym location in all of Asia is Ho Chi Minh City, the largest city in Vietnam.
Based in Ho Chi Minh City (formerly Saigon), California Management Group (CMG.Asia), one of the most influential companies in Southeast Asia for fitness, entertainment and lifestyle, has signed an exclusive development agreement to open UFC Gyms throughout select regions of Southeast Asia.
Along with a strong track record of success, CMG.Asia’s Founder and Chairman, Randy Dobson, also has close business ties with Mark Mastrov, the Founder of 24 Hour Fitness and Co-Founder of New Evolution Ventures.
UFC GYM was created as a partnership between The Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) and New Evolution Ventures (NEV), pioneers and operators of well-known fitness brands. UFC’s brand recognition and MMA training methods, combined with NEV’s global experience with health clubs created a revolutionary fitness platform.
“UFC GYM is a perfect match for our exciting portfolio of international fitness and entertainment brands that we currently offer in Vietnam and Southeast Asia,” – Chairman of CMG.Asia, Randy Dobson.
“The addition of UFC and New Evolution Ventures as strategic business partners enhances our ability to provide exciting and dynamic ways of bringing more value to our clients with a global network of clubs and unique cutting edge MMA programming.”
Randy Dobson, Chairman and Founder of CMG.Asia.
“Our partnership with CMG.Asia marks another major milestone for our company as we introduce UFC Gym to Vietnam” – CEO of UFC Gym, Brent Leffel.
“Asia is one of UFC’s fastest growing markets and we want to bring signature MMA styles of training and fitness to all fight fans in this region. Our fans and fitness consumers in Southeast Asia understand UFC‘s brand and we can’t wait for them to train at our signature gyms.”
“Razor” Rob McCullough training model Lan Khue during his trip to Asia
“We are thrilled that UFC Gym is expanding into Southeast Asia” – UFC Executive Vice President and General Manager of Asia, Kenneth Berger.
Kenneth Berger, UFC Executive Vice President and General Manager of Asia
The Sneak Peek of Asia’s first UFC Gym welcomed the visit of “Razor” Rob McCullough, former WEC Lightweight Champion of the World.
Now heading up training for UFC Gym, “Razor” Rob spent the past week in Ho Chi Minh city at the soon to open UFC Gym location to train the mix of international instructors, boasting professional fighters from multiple countries including France, England, the Philippines and Thailand.
“Razor” Rob Mccullough at the “Sneak Peek” of Asia’s First UFC Gym location.
CMG.Asia will be investing another $15 million into the Vietnam market, with a commitment to open a minimum of 5 new UFC Gyms.
Already operating over 30 fitness centers under 5 premium brands, California Management Group also has businesses in additional industries such as beauty, retail, advertising, med tech, digital marketing, modeling and employs over 2,500 people throughout a variety of countries in South East Asia.
Since debuting in 2009, UFC Gym has opened more than 135 locations throughout the United States, Australia, Canada, South America and the United Arab Emirates.
The fitness franchise has continued to grow at a rapid pace, with more than 50 locations were opened in the past two years and over 50 gyms expected to open in the next year alone.
Opening by the end of 2016.
The official opening of Asia’s first UFC Gym will come late in 2016 as the group held it’s first “Sneak Peek” Press Conference earlier this week inside the location of the soon to be opened gym. Along with a variety of MMA programs available, the gym will also seek to train, develop and sponsor future professional fighters wishing to fight out of the region.