BEIJING, July 11, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- Following the enormous success of last November's live event at The Venetian® Macao's CotaiArena™, Sands China Ltd. and the Ultimate Fighting Championship® are announcing a new, multi-year partnership which will bring regular live UFC® events to Asia, as well as produce a Chinese version of the UFC's hit reality series The Ultimate Fighter® for the first time.
Beginning in 2014, the UFC will stage a series of live events at both The Venetian Macao and Marina Bay Sands, the luxury Singapore property of Sands China's parent company, Las Vegas Sands Corp.
Cotai Strip Resorts Macao and Marina Bay Sands will also be the presenting sponsors of The Ultimate Fighter China. The Ultimate Fighter is the world's long-running sports reality series, which has launched over 100 UFC careers including world champions Forrest Griffin, Rashad Evans and Matt Serra. TUF® China will be a 12-part series where the best Chinese mixed martial artists in the world will live, train and compete with each other to win a six-figure contract with the UFC.
The highly anticipated Chinese edition of The Ultimate Fighter will be co-produced by UFC and Liaoning Radio Television and is scheduled to premiere this November on Liaoning Satellite TV, reaching more than 830 million viewers across China. The live Finale event to determine the inaugural champion of The Ultimate Fighter China will be held at The Venetian Macao's CotaiArena in March 2014.
Mark Fischer, Executive Vice President and Managing Director of UFC Asia, said: "We are very excited to announce these new partnerships with Sands China and Liaoning Radio Television. With Sands China's support we will be bringing regular events to the region, as well as the Chinese edition of The Ultimate Fighter. This is an unprecedented initiative for any global sports league in China. With national distribution through Liaoning Satellite TV, we will not only develop the next generation of UFC fighters from China, but also introduce the UFC to millions of new fans across the region."
Edward Tracy, President and Chief Executive Officer of Sands China Ltd., said: "Sands China is looking forward to continuing to work with the UFC in bringing the world's greatest MMA athletes and events to this region. November 2012's UFC Macao was a big success and we are excited that this new partnership will enable us to continue to host these high-octane, world-class sporting events, and to take advantage of this unique opportunity to identify promising MMA fighters in China. It's all part of Sands China's multi-tiered entertainment strategy, helping to diversify the entertainment offering in Macao."
"We are pleased to bring UFC centre-stage not only to Macao, but also to our Singapore property," said George Tanasijevich, President and Chief Executive Officer of Marina Bay Sands. "Marina Bay Sands is proud to host several UFC events over the coming years. This partnership is part of our ongoing commitment to Singapore to offer the best in international sports and entertainment for our guests and for the local population."
"Liaoning Radio Television (LRTV) is thrilled to be broadcasting The Ultimate Fighter China on Liaoning Satellite Television as well as taking an active role in co-producing the series with UFC. With LRTV's top production teams from mainland China and Hong Kong working alongside UFC's team, the Chinese audience will experience the best elements of its U.S. format while adopting a localized approach which will emphasize athletes' personal stories and profiles," said Zeng Shaowu, Deputy Chief Editor of LRTV. "Combining the dynamic sport of the UFC with the talent present in China, I believe The Ultimate Fighter will showcase the spirit and strength of China within the country and to the world."
The registration process for The Ultimate Fighter China, with full details and application, is available online at sports.sohu.com/tuf2013. To be eligible, candidates must be: male, age 18-34, have professional mixed martial arts experience, speak Mandarin, be of Chinese decent and able to compete as a featherweight (145 pounds/66 kilograms), lightweight (155 pounds/70 kilograms) or welterweight (170 pounds/77 kilograms).
Successful applicants will attend tryouts in Beijing July 21 at the Lido Hotel and in Singapore July 25 at the Marina Bays Sands.
For more details on the UFC visit www.ufc.cn.
About the Ultimate Fighting Championship®
Universally recognized for its action-packed, can't-miss events that have sold out some of the biggest arenas and stadiums across the globe, the UFC® is the world's premier mixed martial arts (MMA) organization. Owned and operated by Zuffa, LLC, UFC is headquartered in Las Vegas and has offices in Beijing, Singapore, Sao Paolo, London, and Toronto. UFC produces more than 30 live events and 400 hours of programming annually with a library of over 50,000 hours of content. The largest Pay-Per-View event provider in the world, UFC is also broadcast on free-to-air, cable and satellite networks in over 145 countries, to nearly 800 million TV households worldwide, in 28 different languages. Leaders in digital distribution, UFC connects with tens of millions of fans through its website, UFC.com, Youtube, XBOX, Sony Playstation, iTUNES, Hulu, and Amazon.com as well as social media sites such as Twitter and Facebook where UFC has reached over 10 million followers.
About Sands China Ltd.
Sands China Ltd. (HKEx: 1928, Sands China or the Company) is a Cayman Islands registered Company and is listed on The Stock Exchange of Hong Kong Limited. Sands China is the largest operator of integrated resorts in Macao. The Company's Cotai Strip Resorts Macao is comprised of The Venetian® Macao-Resort-Hotel, The Plaza™ Macao and Sands® Cotai Central. The Company also owns and operates Sands® Macao on the Macao peninsula. The Company's integrated resorts contain a diversified mix of leisure and business attractions and transportation operations, including large meeting and convention facilities, a wide range of restaurants, shopping malls, world-class entertainment at the CotaiArena™ and the Venetian Theatre, and a high-speed Cotai Water Jet ferry service between Hong Kong and Macao. The Company's property development projects on Cotai have the goal of transforming it into Asia's premier entertainment and business destination. Sands China is a subsidiary of global resort developer Las Vegas Sands Corp. (NYSE: LVS).
For more information, please visit www.sandschinaltd.com.
About Cotai Strip Resorts Macao – Macao's Integrated Resort City
Sands China Ltd. is the leading developer, owner and operator of integrated resorts in Macao. The befittingly named Cotai Strip Resorts Macao, situated on reclaimed land between the islands of Coloane and Taipa, is the one destination that provides a stunning array of experiences at the heart of Cotai. Cotai Strip Resorts Macao has transformed a gaming-centric day-trip market into an integrated resort city and international hub for business and leisure travellers.
Pulsating with life, both night and day, Cotai Strip Resorts Macao features an expansive offering of affordable luxury available nowhere else in Macao, with approximately 9,000 hotel rooms and suites, international superstar live entertainment, duty-free shopping with 600 retailers offering an unparalleled array of name brands, 1.3 million square feet (120,000 square metres) of meeting and exhibition space for Asia's leading conferences and exhibitions, gaming excitement, transportation offerings and well over 100 dining options, including international restaurants, bars and lounges. Cotai Strip Resorts Macao is a must-see destination providing every guest with an unforgettable experience and unparalleled excitement.
Comprised of the The Venetian® Macao-Resort-Hotel; The Plaza™ Macao, featuring the Four Seasons Hotel Macao; and Sands® Cotai Central, featuring the world's largest Conrad, Sheraton, and Holiday Inn hotels, Cotai Strip Resorts Macao is where Asia's ultimate destination is all within reach.
Cotai Strip Resorts Macao….truly Macao Starts Here™. For more information, please visit www.cotaistrip.com/en/.
About Marina Bay Sands Pte Ltd
Marina Bay Sands is the leading business, leisure and entertainment destination in Asia. It features large and flexible convention and exhibition facilities, 2,560 hotel rooms and suites, the rooftop Sands SkyPark, the best shopping mall in Asia, world-class celebrity chef restaurants and an outdoor event plaza. Its two theaters showcase a range of leading entertainment performances including world-renowned Broadway shows. Completing the line-up of attractions is ArtScience Museum at Marina Bay Sands which plays host to permanent and marquee exhibitions. For more information, please visit www.marinabaysands.com
About Liaoning Radio and Television (LRTV)
Liaoning Radio TV ("LRTV") is one of the oldest TV networks in China and is the largest TV network in Northeast China. LRTV has 10 analog TV channels, 9 analog radio channels, 5 national pay-TV channels, 18 provincial digital VOD channels, 10 provincial digital music channels and the LRTV internet broadcasting platform (www.lntv.com.cn).
About Liaoning Satellite TV (LNSTV)
Founded in 1997, Liaoning Satellite TV ("LNSTV") has become the No.1 satellite TV network in Northeast China, reaching more than 830 million viewers nationwide. Between 2008 and 2010, LNSTV became one the top 5 satellite TV channels in mainland China. LNSTV covers all the 71 cities that CSM uses for TV rating report, and has also been broadcast in overseas markets including North America, Russia, Japan, Korea, and Australia.
SOURCE The Ultimate Fighting Championship