Croatia-based combat sports channel provider Fight Channel Group has named Jorge Elias as vice-president, charged with enhancing the development of the group, which has just announced the sale of its channel for the western Balkans markets, Fight Channel, to Kohlberg Kravis Roberts-backed United Media.
The sale of the regionally-focused channel to United Media, the programming arm of pay TV and cable operator United Group, leaves Fight Channel Group with its international service, Fight Channel World HD, which is distributed in Austria, Czech Republic, Bulgaria, Romania, Israel, Netherlands, Australia, South Africa, Philippines, Croatia, Slovenia and Macedonia. The group also owns and produces Final Fight Championship mixed martial arts and kickboxing events in Europe and the US.
Elias has more than 30 years’ senior management experience, including a decade in strategic development and execution in the mixed martial arts world and the TV business. He has worked for UFC, Dream Stage, Pride FC and King of the Cage, and has produced over 400 hours of TV coverage of mixed martial arts for the Hispanic market.
“Jorge Elias is the right person for Fight Channel Group. We believe his strong leadership experience, extensive background and business development skills will help our company to strengthen partnerships, develop strategic alliances and expand our worldwide presence,” said Fight Channel Group president Orsat Zovko.
“I am very excited to be joining the Fight Channel Group. I believe Orsat Zovko has a great business model and talented management team that uniquely positions it to capitalise on the sport’s revolution that MMA has created. In the last couple of months Orsat and I discussed a lot. We share the same vision and the same way of thinking and the result of our strategy will soon be seen globally,” said Elias.