When you see Dana White, the bald headed President and co-owner of the UFC on TV, he always leaves you with the same impression. He’s loud, obnoxious, confident, and most probably wealthy. You’re right about the wealthy, but how much is he worth? Dana started at the bottom, way at the bottom. In the 80’s, Dana was an aerobics instructor (don’t get too excited, it was boxaerobics) and amateur boxer in Las Vegas. By 1995, he was the owner of three Las Vegas-based boxing facilities, named The Gym. White later started his own sports-management company, managing pro boxing prospects. Through his boxing channels he eventually went on to manage mixed martial artists Chuck Lidell and Tito Ortiz. According to wikipedia
As a manager for UFC fighters Tito Ortiz and Chuck Liddell, White learned that Semaphore Entertainment Group, the parent company of the UFC, was looking for a buyer for the UFC. White soon contacted Lorenzo Fertitta, a childhood friend, an executive at Station casinos and a former commissioner of the Nevada State Athletic Commission. Within a month Lorenzo Fertitta and his older brother Frank Fertitta III bought the UFC, with White installed as its president.White currently owns 10% of Zuffa, LLC, the entity the Fertitta brothers created to own and manage the UFC
In hindsight, the $2 million that the Fertittas paid for the UFC seems like a steal but it wasn’t always smooth sailing. At one point, the UFC was $40 million in debt and the Fertittas were on the verge of getting out. Many people say the change of rules helped launch the new UFC but in actuality the rules had already been changed by the time Zuffa made the purchase. It was the gradual acceptance of Mixed Martial Arts that has made the UFC the company it is. That gradual acceptance was led by the UFC financed show “The Ultimate Fighter” and other events on Spike TV. It also helped that White was everywhere and anywhere necessary to help promote the company. Unfortunately, White may have done too good of a job. New fight leagues are popping up everywhere and many are willing to outspend the UFC to get the best fighters. The UFC doesn’t seem too worried and their Pay Per View counts continue to grow.
Now let’s take a look at the assets of Dana White
1. 10% of the Zuffa (owners of Pride, UFC, and a few other MMA leagues) Accordingly the company’s EBITDA margin (EBITDA represents earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization; an EBITDA margin is akin to a profit margin) more than doubled from the mid-teens in 2005 to more than 40 percent of gross revenues in 2006. Dave Meltzer of the Wrestling Observer Newsletter reported that Zuffa is believed to have grossed $190 million in 2006 and posted a before-tax profit of $76 million. You can double that in 2007. Pride was purchased for $70 Million (there was a shady loan involved with the purchase) . Let’s put the value of UFC about $1 billion (probably light) and add it to Pride’s $350 Million X 10 percent. White’s value $135 Million
2. Salary as President of UFC . Complete guess but I would say that it’s lower that most people think due to his being an owner as well. I’ll say $2 million a year but most likely has bonuses that reflect the fact he is the one who brought UFC to the table for purchase
3. Owner of 3 Private clubs called “The Gym” in Vegas. Value $4 Million
Ironically, White is private when it comes to finances. It is the only thing he is private about but I would put his net worth at 150 million depending on his “private investments” . He also let it be known that he still packs a punch and trains daily in Mixed Martial Arts. He has even challenged his former client Tito Ortiz to a public match. It’s this “I can conquer the world” approach that has led him to riches and worthy of being our “Someone Wealthier than You” selection.
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