On November 10 of 2012, the UFC held its first fight card in Southeast Asia at the Cotai Arena in Macau, China. Following the event, Vice President and Managing Director Asia Mark Fischer stood with Indonesian broadcaster Media Nusantara Company‘s (MNC) Rudy Tanoesoedibjo and revealed a media partnership to launch the company into the fourth largest population in the world. On Januaray 28, 2013, during a current UFC media trip that includes Champion Ben Henderson, further announcements have been made regarding the MMA promotion’s involvement in the Indonesian market.
In order to develop a base in the country, the UFC will work with MNC’s Mentoring Group to host a “Fighter Development Program”. The first ‘try out’ to find a talented fighter from Indonesia will be in Jakarta on 9-10 March.
“Because we want to attract as many fighters, we invite all martial art branch to be present in the “try out day” in Jakarta later on. There is no maximum age limit, but at a minimum must be over 18 years of age. To be able to participate in the Fighter Development Program, the boxer who is interested can contact MNC Group (Domas Batoro) at 021-5828000,” says Rudy.
Twenty to thirty fighters will be chosen in the early stages of the program. They will be trained in Jakarta until the end of March, and then later four to eight of the best fighters will be selected to practice in Las Vegas, United States for 2.5 months under the guidance of a professional MMA fighter.
MNC Group CEO Rudy Tanoesoedibjo said, it will be very serious to develop MMA as a sport achievements. Moreover, seeing the abundance of martial sports that developed in Indonesia. “With a 17 percent market share we believe can help socialize this MMA,” he said.
With the FDP, he said, it wanted to prove that Indonesia also have the sole fighter capable of competing with other fighters from abroad. “It’s not a short process, because we have a talented fighter. Hopefully in 5-6 months ahead we could see his proof directly in the UFC USA later, “he added.
Why choose MNC in collaboration with the UFC? While there are also other MMA competitions such as Legend FC and One FC, Rudy see that for now the UFC is still the greatest, forward, and growing both in competition and business. “This first Cooperation will run for three years. In the future, however, if high devotees are maybe we will create its own competition no longer training programs, to then remain distributed to the UFC, “said Rudy later.
“We will train to become a fighter the UFC champion Indonesia in the future. I know it takes a long process. But, with the development and a good program, will make Indonesia become the fighter to be feared, “said Managing Director of UFC in the Asia, Mark Fischer.