India is a dumb idea


(Future Tapout customers)

Okay, now that the post-coital glow is off Lorenzo Fertitta going full time with the UFC, it’s time to start ripping him a new asshole for the stupid shit that he says. It’s kinda what we do here, man. Welcome to the club! Here’s a Lorenzo quote from a Kevin Iole article:

“Think about this for a second: India has 350 million men between the ages of 18 and 34, and that’s our key demographic,” Fertitta said. “The magnitude of these markets is staggering. Dana has been doing a phenomenal job with this company, and I’ve been doing what I could given my responsibilities (at Station Casinos).”

Now ain’t that just the dumbest statement you ever heard? I have to wonder about how the UFC picks the countries they talk up for expansion. Last we heard, they were talking about the freaking Philippines and now they’re bringing up fucking India. Fucking India!

Over 800 million people in India live on less than half a US dollar per day – the standard considered to be the poverty line for the country. Latest estimates place the Indian population at just over 1.1 billion, already leaving less than 300 million people total (males and females of all ages) that might be able to spend their money on things other than food, water, and shelter.

I get the fact that Lorenzo is just trying to point out the scope and possibilities that lay in expansion. But picking India is perhaps the most whack national choice in the book. You might as well try to say penguins in Antartica represent an amazing opportunity for the UFC’s growth. Quick tip: if you’re going to port this quote around to other people, how about saying “China” instead of India. It’ll seem a lot less silly.

  • fightfan

    Hilarious!!! Good luck with that. Motherfuckers can barely afford a camel yet alone the price of the UFC

  • D. Capitated

    India is such a poor choice, what with its double digit growth, US sized middle class, and so on. Who cares that virtually everyone is trying to get a foothold in the country? What does it matter that Disney is highly interested in putting a park up in Mumbai? What’s next? Will someone will suggest China is an emerging market? Hur hur hur.

  • http://chinacombat.blogspot.com Sha

    It seems to me it would be much more easier to develop the UFC brand in Europe and South America, which are already relatively familiar with MMA and the UFC.
    There is MMA in China (Art of War), but it’s still a very small organization despite the huge market.

  • http://insidefights.insidepulse.com/author/mwnichol/ Mike_N

    Hey, the UFC is a business. 750 million people are too hard to ignore as a market, no matter how low the standard of living may be for some of them, and Ryan, you’ve gone on about their complete lack of scruples on more than one occasion, so why would this be any different?

  • http://www.mmafrog.com tertio

    I was in Afghanistan a couple years ago and they seemed to have a lot of 18 to 34 yo males. Same with IRAQ, although a few of them are being snipped everyday. I think they should consider these 2 markets as well.

    I see a lot of young males in the news almsot daily in Gaza. And they seem to enjoy fighting a great deal !

  • D. Capitated

    Well, Europe doesn’t really have that much familiarity with MMA. The UFC isn’t broadcast on any major stations over there outside of Setanta, which doesn’t necessarily do most of the continent a lot of good. Its kinda funny that you could watch the occasional Shooto and K-1 Heros event on Eurosport, which is televised all oer the continent and is pretty widely available, but you can’t see the UFC almost anywhere other than a military base in Germany. South America doesn’t have anywhere near the sheer numbers in the middle class either India or China do, and it likely never will. Only 382,000,000 people live in South America. India’s middle class is projected to be as much as 200,000,000 more than that by the year 2025 while spending upwards of three times what they do now.

  • Steve

    I’ve got to agree with D.Capitated

    India’s economy is booming. Sure, they’ve still got massive poverty issues, but there is a ton of money to be had there.

    They have one of the fastest growing economies in the world and while only a small percentage of their population are reaping the benefits, a small percentage of a billion is still a shitload of people.

  • http://www.fightticker.com Pramit

    FL,
    I can’t tell if this post is meant to be analysis or humor.
    India as mentioned by another commenter is actually one of the hottest economies in the world and has the largest middle class in the world (and is the world’s largest democracy.)
    However, I could see your point regarding it’s unbelievable level of poverty if you hadn’t then suggested China as a more suitable country than India. China has a similar issue with poverty and worse, they’re not even a democracy and their markets are not very open.
    Even the NBA is trying to make inroads into India.
    I think the Fertittas are wise with their plan…

  • cyph

    If MMA bloggers ran the UFC, there would be no UFC left. FL, the guys at Bloody Elbow, and even the numb nuts at MMAPayout are all myopic. Seriously, other than Adam Swift, the other pencil pushes at MMAPayout have seriously retarded views of business.

    India is the 12th largest economy in the world. After China, it is the fastest growing economy in the world. Within a decade or two, it will be the most populous nation in the world. Furthermore, it’s growth industry is high tech, not farming or textile or manufacturing like China is.

    Do you know what 5% of 300 million people is? That is 15 million people. If only 5% of that 5% orders PPV, that is 750k buys. But forget about PPVs… why do you need to sell PPV when you can sell advertising for a TV population of 300 million? Hell, with the fast growing economy, within a decade that TV population could reach a critical mass of 600-800 million people. Why the fuck do you need to sell PPV when 5% of that is a potential TV viewership of 40 million viewers?

    MMA bloggers are myopic and that is why they don’t run the UFC. You guys would have NEVER bought the UFC when there was no market for MMA in the US. You would never go to England when there was no market for MMA there. And you would never go to India because there is no market for MMA there. You make the most money where there is not already a market for it, not where there is already a market for it. Ask the IFL.

    The Ferttitas are not billionaires because they’re stupid. They are billionaires because they see things that MMA bloggers and the rest of the population don’t. MBA class dismissed.

  • http://bloodyknux.com dy-no-mite3000

    India is a logical and smart choice in an attempt for “world growth” India’s sports scenes are very heavy and passionate between their citizens, now if the UFC could obtain a foothold there, there are major corporations out there that would foot the bill towards pushing shows out there and while they won’t draw the same revenue a US show would, the large advertising fees they would receive would not only almost recoup those potential losses but at the same time could be worth a risk.
    The Phillipeans? I mean it’s a huge fight community out there but the financial logistics puzzle me a bit more than India.

    In the end, as we’ve seen in the UK, and throughout America over the years, that when you invest in MMA in countries and new markets, fighters grow and follow from there. By investing in these interesting markets, we’re going to QUICKLY start seeing much more international flare on the MMA world stage as fighters get exposed to MMA and leave MT or Boxing or Kick Boxing or Bocci Ball for MMA. But you gotta expose people to it first.

    You think I’m nuts? Look at the quality of MMA fighters from 10 years and and now from today, I’m talking quality of training and quality of output in a fight. Now imagine Muay Thai shed gyms in Thailand actively training guys to cross over or even in India or fucking Kandahar it doesn’t matter where, but if you get the product out there people will follow in.

    Isn’t Kultar “Black Mamba” from India? What would happen if the UFC 4 years from now hosted it’s first event in India with a handful of fledging Indian fighters on the event? Yeah it would be a money maker and that can’t be denied.

  • Steve

    Also, keep in mind that India has a rich grappling tradition. Everyone likes to point to Greek Pankration as the grandaddy of MMA, but Indian Malla-yuddha is every bit as old and just as similar. If any culture has a built in appreciation of the ground game, it is India.

  • D. Capitated

    I think even the rest of the population knows. I can’t even think of a multinational company that isn’t trying to establish links in China.

  • Steve

    “Isn’t Kultar “Black Mamba” from India?”

    I’m pretty sure he is a Canadian of Indian descent. He’s Indian in the same way that Denis Kang is Korean.

  • D. Capitated

    Err, I meant India, but China too. I guess the crushing poverty in much of China just doesn’t count in comparison to India, given that China has been able to pull things like getting the Summer Olympics and whatnot. They get a pass.

  • cyph

    While I’m on the rant.

    People think that the July 19th show is just to counter Affliction. That is partly true. However, most MMA bloggers feel that the UFC is wasting money because they’re spending money to counter a losing endeavor like Affliction. However, that is myopic thinking.

    The July 19th show has many implications:
    1. Counter Affliction. Demoralize them so bad that they don’t even think about selling another show.
    2. Destroy the competition so that their stars think twice about going elsewhere.
    3. Provide a smooth transition for Anderson Silva at 205.
    4. Give Anderson Silva exposure to new MMA fans. EliteXC is bringing in new MMA fans, and these fans search for “MMA” on google. Most sites point to Silva as the P4P #1 guy in Anderson Silva. Who the fuck is this guy? Well, July 19th you will see him.
    4. Market Anderson Silva to casual fans. You have the #1 P4P guy in MMA. Now you got to send out the message to casual fans. This guy is not going any where so you might as well market him as much as possible.
    4. Provide FREE MMA, UFC, exposure to UFC stars so they can sell future PPV. You give away the razor so you can sell the blades. Fight Night has EliteXC caliber fighters. Anderson Silva is elite UFC caliber fighters. Show the new fans the difference.

    It’s not all about Affliction, folks.

  • D. Capitated

    Silva wouldn’t be on free TV fighting James Irvin if it wasn’t for Affliction though. Plus that assumes Anderson is making the transition to 185, even though the UFC has been pretty clear about that not being the case.

  • Lumpia

    The Philippines was actually a good idea. The Philippines were once part of the US and are thefore they are the most western of asian countries. Unlike other asian nations, they buy PPV and (like Germany, another expansion possibility) the WWE and WWE PPVs sell well there (bug MMAPayout for the numbers). And Brandon Vera would have a huge draw there. Much like GSP and Canadians. Filippinos are also big fight fans. Manny Pacquiao is a national hero.

  • cyph

    Silva is going to be fight at both. His frame will support 205, and as he gets older, cutting to 185 will be very hard. I believe he started at welterweight. However, the money’s at 205. He will be going there within two years. Bet on it.

  • http://www.fightersonlymagazine.co.uk/home/ Hywel Teague [FO Magazine]

    dude when I saw the pic and the caption I LOL’d and actually shouted “you motherfucker!”

    in a good way of course

  • http://www.lukecummo.com Lifer

    I can’t even begin to imagine the quality of choreographed dance entrances in India. I got a nosebleed just trying to conceptualize it.

  • Shane

    WWE had reasonable success in India in 2002 – back when their product wasn’t all that great. With the introduction of The Great Khali, WWE is now selling bucketloads of merchandise there, which suggests there is a large market.

    I see no harm in UFC trying to tap that market, provided they don’t tour there as frequently or aggressively as they do Europe.

  • http://koolpaw.wordpress.com koolpaw

    U mean Indiana? INDIA??
    =D

    nice post to spread my load and master,

    India? “u like the ice-cream?”
    http://www.illwillpress.com/tech.html
    BUT You American bastards pay only 20us$ a week in Inidia!!!

  • http://www.fightticker.com Pramit

    To Lifer’s point, can you imagine what would happen if EliteXC went to India and what sort of bastardized bollywood dance choreographies they’d come up with for their shows? sigh…

  • http://www.fightersonlymagazine.co.uk/home/ Hywel Teague [FO Magazine]

    Lifer makes a good point- UFC should sign Black Mamba – an English speaking Indian-Canadian (curry kind, not gambling kind) who can dance like a motherfucker

  • Steve

    I’m not usually a fan of the Pride style entrances and opening ceremonies, but I think a full blown EliteXC Bollywood extravaganza would be hilarious. I would definitely pay for that event.

  • Hattori Hanzo Gracie

    It can be succesful I they start small and don’t end up spending a ton of money in India. Why not do a show in Iraq? Lots of mma fans among the military. Have Brain Stann fight Elvis Sinosic.

  • Hattori Hanzo Gracie

    The ULTIMATE reason why UFC will do well in India. That is if they can get this guy…http://fightlinker.com/blog/?p=989

  • http://www.tardhard.com Reverend Clint

    the jackels are revolting!

  • Jackie Chiles

    Maybe they can get “Great Tiger” from Mike Tysons punch out to fight.

  • Steve

    “the jackels are revolting!”

    I agree. They stink on ice.

  • http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Epicureanism Atom

    jackels?

  • http://bloodyelbow.com Kierkegaard

    “9cyph

    If MMA bloggers ran the UFC, there would be no UFC left. FL, the guys at Bloody Elbow, and even the numb nuts at MMAPayout are all myopic. Seriously, other than Adam Swift, the other pencil pushes at MMAPayout have seriously retarded views of business.”

    You should take “the guys at Bloody Elbow” out of your little rant there. Check this out:
    http://www.bloodyelbow.com/2008/6/20/555619/ufc-to-india-is-an-excelle

    The guys at Bloody Elbow agree with you that India is potentially a huge market.

  • RL Dookiefuck

    India is a great choice on paper- a huge market with a mostly english speaking population.

    The problem is that their culture is extremely conservative and may not take to the UFC’s EXTREME marketing too easily.

  • http://www.lukecummo.com Lifer

    they dont allow public displays of affection right? dana white could be the next richard gere.

    - On April 15, 2007 Gere appeared at an AIDS awareness rally in Jaipur, India. During a live news conference to promote condom use among truck drivers, the American actor affectionately embraced Bollywood superstar Shilpa Shetty, dipped her, and kissed her several times on the cheek.[10] As a result of that seemingly innocuous gesture, a local court ordered the arrest of Gere and Shetty, finding them in violation “public obscenity” laws. Gere, who quickly fled the country, has said the controversy was “manufactured by a small hard-line political party.” About a month later, a two-judge bench headed by the Chief Justice of India, KG Balakrishnan described the case as “frivolous” and believed that such complaints (against celebrities) were filed for “cheap publicity” and have brought a bad name to the country. They ruled that “Richard Gere is free to enter the country. This is the end of the matter.”

  • rollshop

    Statistics indicate that India is actually the number one smelliest country on the planet, producing no less than 85% of the worlds worst odors each year. I for one don’t want to be in any arena where a bunch of smelly, sweating dudes are battling it out. That just sounds gross. No way the UFC should head there, sounds awful.

  • Young Duby

    I live in Manila and certainly hope that the UFC comes here one day. They have an exceptionally strong fight tradition here and the UFC and MMA is extremely popular (you can get great knock-off UFC gear). The Araneta Collisieum (thrilla in manila) is where they would go and if they don’t charge Vegas prices, I think they could do very well here.

  • India

    Hilarious to read stupid comments fom people who have never been here or know anything about India. I am from India and have been following MMA for the past 4 years or so. They show TUF, Pride and K-1 here regularly. Though we get older shows we still do get to watch a whole lot of MMA. Most of my friends watch MMA. Someone mentioned that the WWE was a recent fad here. Its been a rage even decades before the Great Khali came into the picture. I can’t predict how many PPV’s the UFC would do but it surely would have a huge following. The UFC would make much more than what they do in the UK. “If MMA bloggers ran the UFC, there would be no UFC left.” Well said that. I dont even want to comment on the state of the economy.

  • Michael

    There are a lot of idiots who posted here, say its a great idea and that its a good business move. Let me ask how many of you actually have business degrees, I’m saying none.

  • Steve

    “There are a lot of idiots who posted here, say its a great idea and that its a good business move. Let me ask how many of you actually have business degrees, I’m saying none.”

    You would be wrong.

    At least one of those idiots (me) has a BBA in Marketing and worked for a multinational consumer products company for the better part of a decade before chucking it all and switching to a much less lucrative career.

    Wait a minute…..

    Maybe I am an idiot.

  • Hattori Hanzo

    Fuck India

  • Hattori Hanzo

    i.e I Like to fuck India the porn star

  • http://www.allelbows.com Esther Lin

    @37, India.
    Well said. India does have one of the fastest growing middle classes and more than a potential for plenty of combat sports savvy fans.

    And–
    FL, I don’t think you considered this quite enough. And I don’t have to be from the subcontinent to feel a little insulted.

  • cyph

    There are a lot of idiots who posted here, say its a great idea and that its a good business move. Let me ask how many of you actually have business degrees, I’m saying none.

    I have an MBA. So what’s your point? Dana doesn’t have an MBA and he’s a great business man. An MBA degree doesn’t mean you know jack shit about business.

  • Hattori Hanzo

    if your gonna go to india why not go to japan?

  • Steve

    “if your gonna go to india why not go to japan?”

    Perhaps Lorenzo has a “Hello Kitty” phobia?

  • HAMMER

    I DONT THINK THE UFC WILL FLY IN A COUNTRY THAT DOESN’T EAT BEEF.. IT JUST DOESN’T SEEM A COGENT BUSINESS PLAN.. AND THIS GUY MAKES 110 MIL. A YEAR??? HOW DO I GET A GAMING LICENSE AGAIN???

    AS FOR THE PHILLIPINES.. I DONT THINK IT WILL TAKE THERE EITHER. MOST OF THE BARGIRLS THERE FIGHT AS WELL OR BETTER THAN MOST MMA MEN..

  • HAMMER

    ON THE OTHER HAND, MAYBE UFC WOULD FLY IN SOME OF THESE REPRESSED COUNTRIES. I AM SURE MANY MEN WOULD FIND JIUJITSU HOMOEROTIC. NOTHING LIKE WATCHING TWO SWEATY MEN PLAY GRAB ASS ON THE GROUND.. AND HEY, WE ALL KNOW
    JIUJITSU- “ITS ONLY GAY IF YOU MAKE EYE CONTACT”.

  • HAMMER

    UFC vs. Cricket..

    In India, cricket kicks UFC ass.. As does soccer and bad movies.. I would rather watch Indian. Have you seen Padma Lahkshmi?? Rather hot Indian woman…

    Curry tastes like dung…

  • HAMMER

    CYPH..
    If Anderson Silva is the MMA p4p best, then this sport has a long way to go. I saw your mma god get worked in a miami gym by a 19 y.o. open class golden gloves amatuer. His trainer even asked him if he wanted an endswell.. Whipped by a 19 y.o with a modest open class boxing record. After that I found it hard to call him p4p anything..And he calls out Roy Jones?? No wonder Dana White threw that idea under the train…

  • HAMMER

    HATTORI

    Anata kichigai des… But I like India too. Can we share??

  • http://www.fightlinker.com fightlinker

    Trying to break into japan would be like japan trying to break in here … really hard since the UFC would try to crush them. The japanese are more sneaky than the UFC. The UFC just books an event against yours. But the japanese make everything seem okay but then you realize all the people ‘helping’ you are actually stabbing you in the back and wrecking your shit.

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