UFC follows a rich history and tradition of competitive MMA dating back to Pankration, a Greek Olympic Games event introduced in 648 BC. About 80 years ago, a Brazilian form of MMA known as Vale Tudo (anything goes) sparked local interest in the sport. UFC then introduced organised and sanctioned MMA to the United States.
The goal was to find “the Ultimate Fighting Champion” by staging a single-night tournament featuring the best athletes skilled in the various disciplines of all martial arts, including karate, jiu-jitsu, boxing, kickboxing, grappling, wrestling, sumo and other combat sports. The winner of the tournament would be crowned the champion.
In January 2001, under the new ownership of Zuffa, LLC and guided by the leadership of owners Frank Fertitta III, Lorenzo Fertitta, and Dana White, the UFC brand restructured MMA into a highly organised, sanctioned and controlled combat sport. Headquartered in Las Vegas with a network of employees around the world, UFC produces more than 40 live events annually that consistently sell out some of the most prestigious arenas around the globe.