Silver Lake, KKR Step Into Octagon

Silver Lake, KKR Step Into Octagon

Silver Lake, KKR Step Into Octagon by PitchBook

With participation from Silver Lake, KKR and Michael Dell, Hollywood talent agency WME | IMG has agreed to pay a reported $4 billion to acquire UFC, a mixed martial-arts organization that held its 200th flagship event Saturday. UFC president Dana White, who helped acquire the company for $2 million in 2001, will remain in his current role. WME | IMG was formed in 2014 via a combination of William Morris Endeavor and IMG; Silver Lake has backed William Morris since 2012.

Since its merger, WME | IMG has been highly acquisitive, striking deals last year for Professional Bull Riders and the Miss Universe Pageant. The agency has represented UFC for the past decade-plus and also represents some of the organization’s elite athletes, such as Ronda Rousey. The transaction only adds to WME | IMG’s standing as a powerhouse in the world of sports; the agency’s other clients include Wimbledon, the NFL and the English Premier League.

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