It's no secret that the UFC loves Australia and vice-versa. They've held three events there since 2010, and have a fourth on the way at a to-be-determined date to coincide with the season finale of TUF: UK vs. Australia. Today Foxtel, Australia's premier pay-television company, announced an exclusive two-year deal to broadcast UFC content. UFC President Dana White was in Sydney to make the announcement:
"The UFC is the most exciting sports organisation in the world and Foxtel is the no.1 entertainment company in Australia, so this is a perfect match.
"Australia is pound-for-pound the No.1 UFC market for its size, and we are now going to give them more UFC content than ever before. With Foxtel, they won’t miss a single minute of the action".
Foxtel, a subsidiary of parent company News Corporation (who are also owners of FOX in the United States), has broadcast the last two Australian cards, UFC on FX 2 this past March on both FUEL TV and FOX Sports 3, and UFC 127 in February 2011 aired on Main Event, a special Pay-Per-View network. Some of their sports services include FUEL TV, three FOX Sports channels, SPEED, and Main Event. Newly-formed FX Australia, which is part of their entertainment subscription-package, will cover The Ultimate Fighter: UK vs. Australia - The Smashes.
Here is a brief breakdown of the UFC content each Foxtel channel will cover:
FUEL TV - Preliminary fights from all UFC shows ranging from PPV to FUEL TV (US), live FOX, FX, and FUEL main cards, live weigh-ins, UFC Unleashed, and Ultimate Insider.
FX Australia - The Ultimate Fighter: UK vs. Australia - The Smashes.
FOX Sports 1-3 - At least six live non-PPV UFC events per year.
Main Event - All live PPV events.
Essentially, the structure is very similar to the multi-platform FOX deal signed in the United States. One of the few differences is Foxtel customers subscribe to a sports package to receive virtually all sports channels, unlike most North American cable companies where channels like ESPN and Fox Sports Net are a part of most basic and digital cable services. All things considered, this is still a major deal for both Australian MMA fans and the UFC, as the latter continues to make major television deals around the world.