Mixed martial arts is one of the fastest growing sports in the world. Thanks to visionaries such as ONE Championship chairman Chatri Sityodtong, the industry is experiencing a tremendous boost in global viewership, particularly in Asia.
Sityodtong is set to appear at the annual Forbes Global CEO Conference scheduled to take place in Jakarta on Nov. 29. The event will bring together more than 400 global chief executives, tycoons and entrepreneurs to share their experiences in the past year, including the toughest obstacles and how they overcame them.
Sityodtong will be joined by leaders in different fields such as AirAsia chief executive Tony Fernandes and InterContinental Hotels Group chief executive Richard Solomons. President Joko "Jokowi" Widodo is also expected to attend the conference.
A few years ago, mixed martial arts, or MMA, was a relatively niche sport in Asia. There have always been local martial arts communities generating interest in the sport, but nothing that took it to the next level, until ONE Championship came along.
MMA's presence at the conference is a milestone for the sport and a testament to its rapid success over the past few years.
Because of Sityodtong's work with ONE, MMA in Asia is no longer running paces behind the pack – it is revolutionizing sports entertainment in the region with fresh marketing initiatives and a robust digital platform.
In just five years since ONE was established, the company has become the largest sports media property in Asian history, with an audience reach in more than 118 countries worldwide through various international media broadcasts.
It is widely recognized as one of the largest MMA promotions in the world and its popularity has led to a handful of key partnerships with brands such as Disney, Marvel, G-Shock, Under Armour and UMG.
ONE's strategy in Asia is to build local, homegrown Asian martial arts heroes.