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Federal Trade Commission Ends Investigation of UFC

UFC
Josh Holmberg/ICON SMI

For the second straight year, the Federal Trade Commission has decided to end its investigation of the UFC.

The federal agency was looking into “unfair or deceptive acts or practices in or affecting commerce…are…declared unlawful,” per MMAFighting.

Previously, the FTC investigated the top fight promotion regarding its purchase of top MMA rival Strikeforce in 2012.

Former UFC fighters — such as Cung Le, Jon Fitch, Brandon Vera and Nate Quarry — initiated the investigation in 2014, accusing the UFC of “illegally maintaining monopoly and monopsony power by systematically eliminating competition from rival promoters, artificially suppressing fighters’ earnings from bouts and merchandising and marketing activities through restrictive contracting and other exclusionary practices,” according to Sherdog.

About 11 months later, and the UFC can move on from the investigation victorious once again.

“Earlier this year the FTC informed us that it was conducting a non-public investigation, which we believe was instigated by former fighters or their attorneys to bolster a civil action against UFC,” Kirk Hendrick, chief legal officer for the UFC, said in a statement via MMAFighting. “After meeting with the FTC, we are pleased that they have sent us a letter stating that no further action is warranted and the investigation is now closed. We maintain full confidence in our business practices and continue to believe that the plaintiffs’ allegations are meritless.”

While the investigation is now closed, the FTC says it retains the right to “take such further action as the public interest may require.”

The Las Vegas Review-Journal was the first to report on the story.

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