UFC Backs New IMMAF Creation
By iSportconnect | April 13, 2012
The Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) launched a new initiative on Thursday, medic which will see a new creation called the International Mixed Martial Arts Federation (IMMAF) take effect, ed it has been revealed. The UFC claim that it will provide a major boost to the goal of including MMA on the Olympic programme and have issued its “wholehearted” support towards the venture.
The UFC, the world’s leading MMA organisation, have confirmed August Wallén will spearhead the initial growth of the IMMAF as its inaugural president. “In order to maintain the successful growth of our sport, it is important to invest in resources that will develop and cultivate it at an amateur level,” said UFC chairman and CEO Lorenzo Fertitta.
“Having an umbrella organisation that will oversee and help build the sport on a global level will not only provide advanced and ever-improving safety standards but will also create a unified global model to help introduce the sport to new markets. It is our hope that it will also take us one step closer to witnessing the inclusion of the sport of MMA on the Olympic programme,” he added. The creation of the IMMAF aims to help foster the development of the sport at the grassroots level and bolster the work being done by the UFC and all other MMA organisations worldwide, further developing the integrity and legitimacy of the sport.
Marc Ratner, senior vice-president of government and regulatory affairs for the UFC, said: “The creation of this organisation is long overdue. MMA is the fastest growing sport in the world and we support the Federation’s focus on providing a globally unified set of rules and safety measures to help keep all fighters safe. While there are many obstacles ahead in the formation of this international organisation, we are confident of the outcomes and advancements this group will make for the future of our sport.”
Wallen added: “The IMMAF is committed to be at the forefront of developing MMA as an international sport, from the grassroots level to the elite level, supporting the development of regulations and best practices on health, safety, youth involvement and more. Our vision is for MMA to be recognised as a sport through the full membership of IMMAF in SportAccord and for it to ultimately become an Olympic sport. I know many of us dedicated to MMA dream of the day that the sport has worldwide recognition and this is a first step towards making that happen.”