The Professional Fighters League (PFL) has announced a strategic partnership with former Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) heavyweight champion Francis Ngannou to support the mixed martial arts (MMA) series’ expansion into Africa.
- Ngannou to fight exclusively in MMA for the PFL’s pay-per-view (PPV) Super Fight Division
- 36-year-old to serve in a leadership role on the PFL global advisory board, becoming the first active fighter to do so
- Ngannou becomes minority equity owner and chairman of PFL Africa
- PFL Africa events to be staged in ‘key countries on the continent’ live in primetime
Ngannou left the UFC in January after the two parties failed to agree a new contract. The 36-year-old cited a lack of freedom for his exit, claiming requests for health insurance and tailored sponsorship deals for fighters had been rejected. He is also the latest athlete to take a minority stake in the PFL after YouTuber-turned-prizefighter Jake Paul struck a deal to compete in the MMA promotion.
“I believe in the PFL’s ‘fighter first’ culture and global vision including developing the sport in Africa,” said Ngannou.
“With that, I am also proud to announce that I will serve as chairman of PFL Africa which will be the leading MMA organisation on the continent providing great African fighters the opportunity to compete on a global platform.”
Ngannou is set to make his PFL debut in mid-2024, with his opponent yet to be named.