Strikeforce, 50 percent owned by San Jose Sharks owner Silicon Valley Sports & Entertainment, is on pace to post up to $30 million in revenue in the fiscal year ending this June
If you're willing to shell out a few extra greenbacks, you can peep the premium content on their website. MMAPayout.com has some extra insight into the news:
Strikeforce is on pace to post up to $30 million in revenue for this fiscal year (June 2011), compared to 4 million in 2006, which was their first year of operations.
There are current plans to release DVD's from older events and also launch an online catalog within the upcoming quarters, which would add another great revenue stream which they have not fully utilized yet.
Main source of income are ticket sales, sponsorships, and most importantly, television licensing. Back in 2009, Strikeforce signed a TV deal with Showtime, which MMA insiders said the promotion would make $25 million in licensing fees over the course of the three-year deal, which runs into 2012. The deal was made after Strikeforce purchased assets from Showtime's previous MMA partner, ProElite for $3 million, which included roughly 42 fighter contracts and a video library of 20 live events to name a few.
Strikeforce currently boasts a roster of 125 fighters under contract. Back in 2008, they had 10 fighters under contract.
Strikeforce main sponsors include Full Tilt Poker, Rockstar Energy Drinks, and EA Sports.
After signing a deal with Collective Licensing International on April 12, 2010. Since then, Strikeforce has gone through some changes, including a new logo, new merchandising, and a new store website to bring the brand up to date.
The news answers some of the key questions that fans have had over the last couple of years. Is Strikeforce making money despite throwing boatloads of cash at fighter contracts in order to compete with the UFC? Is Strikeforce making any money at all on licensing fees and sponsorships? Is 2011 a final drive at success before fizzling out?
[UPDATE] [Leland Roling]: Since fans are focusing on my use of the phrase "making money", I'll re-phrase and provide some secondary analysis. According to the commenters, revenue does not equal profit. I realize this and edited the post accordingly. With that said, $30 million in revenue is a far cry from what EliteXC ever made when they were working underneath the Showtime banner. Furthermore, Strikeforce has been able to alleviate some of the production costs through their partnerships, and knock down some of the salary costs due to their co-promotion with M-1 Global. As MMAPayout.com points out, Strikeforce has gone from $4 million in revenue to $30 million in five years.
To say that they are not making a profit is a stretch in my mind, but we don't have a stamp of approval on that statement. Is Strikeforce actually making a profit? We don't know, but all signs point to yes in my mind. It may not be the coffers of cash you'd expect to see from the UFC, but making any type of considerable profit while being competitive in the free agent market is a huge plus for Strikeforce. Take these numbers and discuss.