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Tuesday, April 16, 2024
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UFC Owner Endeavor Sells IMG Academy for $1.25B to PE Firm

  • The sale of IMG Academy follows Endeavor's plan to merge WWE with UFC to form a $21B company
  • IMG Academy famously produced tennis stars such as Andre Agassi, Venus and Serena Williams.
Endeavor
Endeavor

UFC owner Endeavor has agreed to sell its world-renowned IMG Academy to Hong Kong-based private equity group BPEA EQT on Tuesday in an all-cash deal valued at $1.25 billion.

The news comes three weeks after UFC said it would merge with WWE to unite the biggest names in entertainment and wrestling. The two entities “have signed a definitive agreement” to create a new publicly traded company valued at $21 billion.

IMG Academy’s campus in Bradenton, Florida, is known as a college preparatory school catering to top youth athletes nationwide. The school is now set to partner with BPEA EQT’s portfolio company Nord Anglia Education, which runs more than 80 private schools across the U.S., Central America, South America, Europe, Asia, and the Middle East.

The combined private education system will serve more than 175,000 students. IMG Academy placed more than 30,000 students on college sports rosters in 2022.

The IMG Academy famously produced tennis stars such as Andre Agassi, Venus and Serena Williams, and Pete Sampras. Their coach Nick Bollettieri, who founded the Nick Bollettieri Tennis Academy in 1978 before IMG bought it in 1987 to form IMG Academy, died in December 2022 at the age of 91. 

Endeavor originally acquired sports and entertainment giant IMG for $2.4 billion in 2014.

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