PFL Africa launched, MMA Superstar Francis Ngannou to serve as Chairman


L-R: Maxwell Djantou Nana, PFL Welterweight; Shido Boris Esperanza, PFL Lightweight; Sadibou Sy, 2022 PFL Welterweight World Champion; Pete Murray, CEO, PFL; Tope Lawani, Co-founder and Managing Partner of Helios Investment Partners; Kunle Lawal, PFL Welterweight; and Juliet Ukah, PFL Strawweight, at the Professional Fighters League (PFL) Africa Launch in Victoria Island, Lagos, today.

The Professional Fighters League (PFL), the fastest-growing and most innovative sports league in the world, announced the launch of PFL Africa on Wednesday in Lagos, Nigeria.

PFL Africa joins PFL Europe and PFL MENA as part of PFL’s network of regional leagues that is becoming the Champions League of MMA.

PFL Africa will introduce an engaging sport-season format with a Regular Season, Playoffs, and Championship featuring top African fighters with all events, for the first time hosted in Africa.

In a groundbreaking partnership, Helios Sports & Entertainment Group has invested and will hold a stake in the promotion, of which MMA superstar Francis Ngannou will serve as Chairman of the league.

“The Professional Fighters League is excited to announce PFL Africa, the third international fight franchise as we continue on our path to becoming the Champions League of MMA,” said PFL CEO, Peter Murray.

“Africa is home to some of the greatest fighters in the world, including our league Chairman Francis Ngannou, and some of the greatest fans in the sport. PFL Africa aims to serve the great fans with premium content while strengthening the PFL global footprint in what has for too long been an underserved market. Alongside our great investment and broadcast partners, we cannot wait to kick off PFL Africa league action in 2025,” he said.

“I am excited and honoured to serve as Chairman of PFL Africa, a league that will shape the very foundation of African MMA,” said Francis Ngannou, Chairman PFL Africa.

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“As we have seen there is a great wealth of talent in Africa just waiting to be given a global stage. I am so very proud to give back to my homeland and to provide great content to a region with such a passionate and diverse fanbase.

“African talent has had disproportionate success on the global MMA stage and MMA currently has a scarcity of events despite significant demand, creating a huge opportunity for growth as young Africans consume more digital content on their devices,” commented Tope Lawani, Co-Founder and Managing Partner of Helios Investment Partners.

“We are looking forward to partnering with the PFL, a world-class organization, and with Francis Ngannou, who is a manifestation of the success of African talent on a global stage. This marks HSEG’s fourth investment following our successful partnership with the NBA in Africa.  We see several areas of direct synergies between PFL Africa and HSEG’s existing unique portfolio and we are excited by the opportunities such collaboration can bring to the continent,” he added.

The Professional Fighters League is excited to be breaking ground and looks forward to an enjoyable and exciting experience in MMA here in Africa.

PFL is a global powerhouse in MMA and the fastest-growing sports league worldwide. PFL has five live fight franchises, offering year-round content: PFL League Season, PFL PPV Super Fights, PFL Challenger Series, PFL International Leagues, and Bellator.

Founded in 2018, PFL is backed by major blue-chip investors including SRJ, Ares, Knighthead, Luxor Capital, Waverley Capital, Elysian Park Ventures, and numerous NBA, MLB, NHL, and MLS team owners.

MMA is the growth sports business of this decade, with 650 million fans worldwide, the youngest audience demographic, and true global revenue streams. PFLmma.com; Instagram (@PFLmma); Twitter (@PFLMMA); Facebook (/PFLmma)

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