• PFL’s unique regular season tournament-style league format is what makes the organization stand out among others
  • Asia is one of the PFL’s biggest targets in its global expansion efforts
  • Bringing in South Korean MMA star Sung Bin Jo is a big move for PFL’s entry into the Asian market

In just two short years, the Professional Fighters League (PFL) has made waves in the United States and climbed to the upper echelon of MMA organizations, right next to Ultimate Fighting Championship or UFC.

One of the biggest focuses for the PFL, however, is to reach MMA fans all over the world. Now, the league is taking a huge leap in its vision with an expansion in Asia, one of the biggest markets for MMA in the world.

Widely regarded as the birthplace of martial arts, Asia has some of the biggest fan bases in the world when it comes to MMA, especially in countries like Japan, the Philippines, China, Thailand, Indonesia, Malaysia, Singapore and others.

In terms of making connections in Asia, the PFL pulled off a big move with the signing of new vice president for communications Loren Mack, a top executive with years of experience in the sports world and the Asian MMA scene.

For Mack, the PFL and Asia would definitely be a match made in heaven.

“With the unique tournament-style league format and with the largest distribution that reaches 160 countries around the world, the PFL definitely has the momentum and can easily go from being the second-biggest MMA league in the world to becoming the number one league in the world,” said Mack.

Being based in Asia for a decade, Mack knows what resonates with the Asian fan bases and believes that one of the keys for the PFL’s potential growth in the continent is its league format, coupled, of course, with giving the athletes a bigger platform.

“The regular season format is something that the fans in Asia can enjoy and relate to, and it gives them the chance to follow their favorite fighters from beginning to end. Apart from that, with the OTT platform, the mobile app, and the partnerships that we’ve secured in the last few months, fighters from Asia who get to compete in the PFL are truly given a global platform where they can shine,” Mack added.

loren mack
Loren Mack says the PFL and Asia would definitely be a match made in heaven. Professional Fighters League

The most important step to building an Asian following, however, is featuring Asian talent, and the PFL recently added a highly-touted featherweight in South Korean Sung Bin “Korean Falcon” Jo.

The 28-year old Seoul, South Korea native is a champion in multiple regional promotions and is coming off a stint in the UFC. With a 9-1 pro record and a 100% finishing rate, Jo hopes to be able to make waves in the PFL’s featherweight division and to be able to lead an influx of Asian talent to the fast-growing promotion.

“I’ll show the PFL and their fans all over the world the strength of an Asian fighter and show what we can do in the PFL,” Jo said.

While he himself can’t guarantee that there will be more Asian fighters to join the PFL ranks in the future, he promises to do all that he can to show that Asian talent indeed belongs on a big stage such as the PFL.

“What I can say is that I will show people that more Asian fighters can succeed in the PFL,” he said.

Jo is hoping to follow in the footsteps of his coach, former UFC welterweight contender Dong Hyun “Stun Gun” Kim — who was the first Korean to make it into the North American promotion — and replicate his success in the UFC to his own journey in the PFL.

“My coach Dong Hyun 'Stun Gun' Kim became the first Korean fighter to join the UFC in 2008, and he was able to win 13 of his 18 fights there. As for me, I’m also the first Korean fighter to be signed by the PFL and I hope to be able to be successful as well. I want to be able to spread the pride of the Korean fighter,” Jo concluded.

The PFL takes pride in its revolutionary tournament format that features a regular season, playoffs and finals — much like most major sporting leagues in the world — as well as a million-dollar grand prize to the tournament winners, something that other organizations don’t have.

Since 2018, the PFL has had two successful seasons under its belt and has produced top-tier stars such as two-time PFL featherweight world champion Lance Palmer, two-time PFL lightweight world champion Natan Schulte, and reigning women's lightweight world champion Kayla Harrison.

Its game-changing approach has also attracted a number of top stars, including former Bellator world champion and top UFC contender Rory MacDonald.

With a depth of talent in its roster and a format that’s not only fighter-friendly but fan-friendly as well, CEO Peter Murray believes that the PFL has a spot alongside the UFC at the top of the heap.

To be the second-largest MMA organization in the world, however, there needs to be a global reach. Lately, that’s what the PFL has been working hard at, with the launch of its OTT platform and mobile app that unlocks content to fans across the globe, as well as partnerships with the Telesport Group in Russia, Eurosport in India and the far-reaching WAVE.TV.

Sung Bin Jo PFL
The PFL takes its global expansion to Asia. Professional Fighters League