Zuffa Files Lawsuit Against DSE

Lorenzo Fertitta and Nobuyuki Sakakibara shake hands at a press conference to announce Zuffa’s purchase of PRIDE in March 2007. Photo property of the Ultimate Fighting Championship.

Zuffa, under the name PRIDE FC Worldwide, the financial holdings company created by Ultimate Fighting Championship owners Lorenzo and Frank Fertitta following the purchase of the assest of PRIDE Fighting Championships in March of last year, has filed a lawsuit against former PRIDE parent company Dream Stage Entertainment.

The news was first reported yesterday by Dave Meltzer of Wrestling Observer, who states that the lawsuit centers around Zuffa’s claim that they were “defrauded” out of millions of dollars following the purchase of the Japanese promotion nearly a year ago:

Pride FC Worldwide Holdings (basically the dummy company set up by UFC after the Pride purchase) have filed a lawsuit against Dream Stage Entertainment, Dream Stage Holdings and Nobuyuki Sakakibara claiming they were defrauded millions of dollars in the purchase of the Pride and Pride Bushido brands.

The lawsuit has since been confirmed as being filed on February 1st.

Zach Arnold of Fight Opinion points out that Zuffa’s due diligence done after the purchase of PRIDE most likely catch many of the potential problems during the evaluation of the PRIDE’s assets. Be sure to check out his post for more words of wisdom on the matter.

Even more interesting, a source close to DSE has told Sherdog that former PRIDE President Nobuyuki Sakakibara is preparing to file his own lawsuit against Zuffa amidst claims that their decision to shut down the PRIDE brand late last year is a breach of the contract they agreed upon prior to DSE selling the rights to the brand.

We will definitely be following this story and will post any new information as it becomes available.


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