Ari Emanuel Buys His Way Into Combat Sports and Sports Entertainment in One Major Deal

Christian Bertrand /
Christian Bertrand /

Endeavour Group Holding Inc.’s CEO (and basis for the lead of HBO’s Entourage) Ari Emanuel already went from controlling 50.1% of UFC to 100% back in March of 2021. Now, with his company being valued at $10.7 billion, he knew he had to make a splash to investors to get that valuation and decided to buy out World Wrestling Entertainment.

Under the terms of this deal, Endeavour will now be listed with a $21.4 billion valuation, with an assumption of a $12 billion valuation for UFC. Endeavour will control 51% of the company, with Vince McMahon and other WWE shareholders controlling the rest. Endeavor President Mark Shapiro said “This is an opportunity to crystallize the true value of UFC. Inside of Endeavor, the street clearly isn’t giving it enough credit.”

While Emanuel and Endeavour’s full holding of the UFC for the last 2 years has presented some amazing opportunities for fighters, now he could bring the same deals to the stars of sports entertainment. However, having Vince McMahon still in the driver’s seat at WWE is a way to guarantee the people won’t be getting what they want.

With the news coming just before WrestleMania, many wondered what might change with creativity for the wrestlers. Rumors have been persistent, but many consider the second night to be a complete flop. Many backstage reporters claimed that Vince ran the second night and destroyed nine months of work from HHH who had been leading the company for some time now.

Torpedoing the company because he’s in charge but not in full ownership is something many worried about Vince McMahon doing should the opportunity ever present itself. Now, due to Emanuel and Endeavour’s aggressive expansion, we’ll see what it would look like. If the first Monday Night Raw following the announcement is any true indication of the changes, then this will be the worst investment of Endeavour’s short but storied history.