Bellator Fighting Championship has reached an agreement with Russia’s leading sports network, R2, that will allow the network exclusive broadcasting rights in the country.
The deal with R2, effective September 28th, brings the total number of countries in which Bellator airs to 81, and introduces the tournament based promotion to an estimated 83 million Russian television viewers.
The organization’s expansion into Russia comes on the heels of several major Russian signings by Bellator throughout the last calendar year, including undefeated M1 veteran Alexander Sarnavskiy. Bellator Chairman & CEO Bjorn Rebney expressed his excitement in a press release issued Tuesday saying:
“Over the last year, as the Bellator brand has experienced enormous growth and our talent team has signed the greatest Russian Mixed Martial Artists in the world, the timing was perfect to align Bellator with Russia’s leading sports network. R2 carries the world’s greatest sports to Russian viewers. So, aligning Bellator with this industry giant is another very exciting step forward in the evolution of the Bellator brand worldwide.”
As Bellator continues to sign and showcase top flight international talent in the promotion, this deal is expected to further expand the already very active brand into the emerging MMA market that is Russia and Eurasia.