B2Digital Inc (OTCMKTS:BTDG) is an emerging force on the OTC as the premier development league for the UFC and top pro MMA sports. That makes it an extremely exciting prospect among small and micro cap stocks because the space has such extraordinary structural momentum with MMA being a relative new-comer in the live sports world, and fan numbers and enthusiasm growing powerfully over the past decade.
That momentum was bolstered a few weeks ago when BTDG kicked off its new season of live MMA events with its Strikehard 55 event toward the end of August, which was a tremendous success before a sold-out crowd.
According to company materials, the event set a new company record for Pay-Per-View viewership and featured an action-packed night of MMA, headlined by a stunning Treston Vines knock-out and a new Strikehard Pro Lightweight title for Sean Fallon.
“The highlight of the night was simply that it happened,” remarked Greg P. Bell, Chairman & CEO of B2Digital. “We were able to plan out, set up, put on, and carry off a truly successful live sports event. That gives us tremendous confidence about the rest of the fall B2 fight event season, including our next two events in September.”
But, the company’s most recent event – which took place over this past weekend – was possibly even more interesting because it represented an addition in terms of segmentation by introducing a new revenue stream: the Grappling series.
For B2Digital Inc (OTCMKTS:BTDG) to move into grappling, to complement its MMA model, is a big development that shouldn’t be overlooked.
It’s important to understand that the business model here isn’t just about drawing MMA fans to live events. This is pipeline. It succeeds or fails by the degree to which it can nurture along a machine that is fundamentally “about” creating exciting fighters. To do that, it doesn’t just need to put on good fight nights. That’s just the end result – the output.
The source of that outcome is about creating a living, breathing ecosystem of mixed martial arts that is just as attractive to young folks interested in an MMA career as it is to fans of the sport. B2Digital Inc (OTCMKTS:BTDG) has to draw the promising talent under its umbrella and give it the resources it needs to eventually succeed in the sport.
To do that B2 has set up a social network and a chain of MMA training facilities in addition to its remarkable network of regional fight groups that host its MMA events.
Now, with its emerging series of grappling events, it has a vehicle for entry-level fighting that doesn’t depend entirely on fan viewership for sustainability on a financial basis – the fighters pay to enter the grappling tournaments.
Grappling is like MMA, except you can’t “strike” (ie, kick or punch). It’s a bit like wrestling. It’s basically a form of MMA that involves no striking or punching and is often understood as a combination of Wrestling and Jiu Jitsu.
The B2 Grappling Series is a series of LIVE tournament-style events where participant Athletes pay the company to compete at each event (in contrast to the model in place for the company’s “B2 Fighting Series LIVE MMA Fights”, which involves collecting fees from live-in-person, pay-per-view, or online streaming audience viewers who pay to watch the event). The B2 Fighting Series brand is licensed across ten (10) US states for MMA fighting competitions. LIVE B2 Grappling Series tournament events are actively being scheduled in major markets in each of these ten states for the immediate future.
Starting Off on a Strong Note
The first Grappling Series event from B2Digital Inc (OTCMKTS:BTDG) took place over this past weekend. The company noted on its twitter feed that:
“B2 Digital $BTDG & United Combat is proud to announce that the 1st ever #B2GrapplingSeries just surpassed 200 participant registrations w/over 1000 matches planned to be held tomorrow Sept 19th at the Hammond Sports Plex in Hammond, IN. These are exciting times! #MMA #Grappling”
That’s huge. 200 participants and over 1000 matches. We don’t know the exact specifics, but other fighting organizations that have hosted grappling events have commonly charged participants approximately $40-50 each.
If that holds up in this case, we could be talking about as much as $9,000 coming in the door. That would be in addition to the PPV revenues generated by the event.
According to the company’s release in August, B2Digital’s management believes the B2 Grappling Series represents a powerful new source of future revenues because it leverages demand untethered to in-person crowd attendance through a full slate of new events with unbounded growth potential. New revenues will be booked by the Company when participants submit fee payments in advance of competition in each B2 Grappling Series Tournament event.
The marketplace for Grappling tournament events already exists. Grappling tournaments have been held around the world over recent years. The Company’s research suggests the Grappling tournament market is a $10 million market in the US alone.
But the real value here is the powerful marketing and fighter development pay-off. Aspiring fighters showed up at the event. They joined the B2 pipeline on some level. And now the sky’s the limit, for B2 and the fighters who stepped into the ring. That provides the company with a payday. But more importantly, it provides B2 with a bumper crop of new talent to help nurture toward the spotlight and its next big MMA PPV success.
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