MMA TV partners with Rakuten TV for Find A Star launch

Sports streaming network MMA TV has officially partnered with video-on-demand streaming service Rakuten TV, starting with the screening of a Mixed Martial Arts talent search documentary series.

MMA TV’s founder and CEO Siju Roseje’s Find A Star will premiere on Rakuten TV on Monday 7th March after the Japanese company secured the rights. The five weekly episodes will follow the progress of 20 contestants who were shortlisted after a nationwide appeal for promising fighters who haven’t entered a professional ring before.

The candidates will complete a set training programme before competing in a series of Bootcamps under the watchful eye of the judges joining Roseje: UAE Warriors Heavyweight Champion Chi Lewis-Parry, KSW fighter Jason “the assassin” Radcliffe, Oktagon MMA’s Alex Lahore and Prim3’s Matt Carroll.

MMA TV founder, CEO and Find A Star judge Siju Roseje commented: “Rakuten TV has partnered with us because MMA is a fast growing sport and our platform is best placed to ride the wave of this increasing popularity. Rakuten sees the potential of the Find A Star series because the talent is incredible, the personalities are big and the winners are going to make a huge impact on the fight scene in the UK and beyond.”

Cathy Hamed, Content Acquisition and spokesperson for Rakuten TV added: “MMA TV will feature as Rakuten’s top channel for the whole of March to launch our mutually beneficial partnership. The deal expands the wide range of content available on our platform and tapping into MMA TV’s following makes good business sense for us to reach potential new customers and advertisers through unique programmes like Find A Star.”

The two winners of MMA TV’s Find A Star contest will receive lucrative multi-fight contracts with promoters Prim3, star in a Prime3 fly-on-the-wall documentary series building up to their bouts, long-term contracts with Mogul Management, and sponsorship deals with RDX Sports.

Britain’s UAE Warriors Heavyweight Champion and Find A Star judge Chi Lewis-Parry commented: “Mixed Martial Arts is really on the map now and Find A Star provides a rare opportunity for fresh and fierce talent to follow in my footsteps to the top. These fighters don’t have any pro experience but they’re really hungry for the prize and the contest is very tough, the five episodes make exciting viewing.”

The 20 shortlisted contenders include a care worker from Walsall, a horse groom from Huntingdon and an electrician from Plymouth. Throughout the contest they will need to demonstrate their skills in Brazilian Jiu Jitsu, Boxing, Muay Thai, Kick Boxing, Cardio and Strength & Conditioning.

Viewers in 100 million homes can now access MMA TV from their televisions, as well as their smart phones and tablets. More than 30 million people have been streaming world class fights across MMA TV’s pay per view, subscription and social channels. The channel has exclusive rights to stream ONE Championship in the UK.

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