Sports Business : One Championship on cost cutting spree, headcount reduced 20%

Singapore-based mixed martial arts promoter One Championship are also feeling the Covid19 heat. The company has revealed that hefty cut to its global headcount has been made. 

After being unable to stage fight cards for almost four months because of the Covid-19 pandemic, One Championship said today (Monday) that it was streamlining operations, including cutting 20 per cent of its worldwide staff.

According to some reports over last few months, company has not been able to deliver growth as projected. The news also comes just one week after Bloody Elbow, the SB Nation-owned MMA publication, revealed that One Championship accumulated losses of 2018 stood at $58.7m. 
ONE Championship declined to comment on queries on the streamlining of the operations and job cuts.

One Championship – Financial Highlights

– In 2016 One Championship lost $14.57m in 2016.

– In 2017 loses rose further to $24.62 m

– Media Rights Revenue of the company saw a increase from $3.37 m in 2017 to $14.4m in 2018
– Sponsorship revenues for the company in 2018 stood at $11.99 m in comparison to $7.75 m in 2017
– Ticketing revenue for the One Championships dipped YOY. In 2017 company generated $0.76 m. But in 2018 it dipped to $0.68 m
– The main jump came on the expense side as One Championship marketing expense saw a jump $10.76 m to $35.17 m
– Employee cost and professional fees also went north. In 2017 it was $7.75m – which went up to $14.85 m.  
One Championship raises $70Mn from investors reportedly at lower valuations

One Championships on Monday also announced that the company has raised $70 Mn from investors. One Championship said that the funding injection brings its total capital to $346m. According to the information from some of the company sources the fund raise has been done at valuation lower than the last raise. 

Chatri Sityodtong, the One Championship CEO and founder, told AFP that the extra funding comes from existing backers as well as investment from a US-investor whose identity will be revealed in the coming weeks. He said that the backing helps to “future proof” the organisation.

Hua Fung Teh, group president of One Championship, said: “I am full of gratitude for this strong vote of confidence amidst the worst global economic crisis in 100 years. With nine figures of cash on the balance sheet and a streamlined organisation, ONE Championship looks forward to continuing to delight our fans around the world with more heroes and new experiences for many years to come.”

Figures revealed in the Bloody Elbow report showed annual eight-figure losses for the Singapore-based property in 2018, 2017 and 2016. The figures came from the financial documents filed by the MMA promotion with Singapore’s Accounting and Corporate Regulatory Authority.

The profit and loss, revenue and expenses figures cited all refer to Group One Holdings Pte Ltd, the name that refers to the One Championship company. Any “Group” figures in the filing refer to the company and its subsidiaries collectively.

The One Championship 2019 financial results are due to be filed in Singapore later this year.