The Professional Fighters League (PFL), the fastest growing and most innovative sports league in the world, today announced it will be leveraging Flagship’s capabilities to deliver IBM’s suite of advanced cloud and AI products to enhance the league’s delivery of next-gen SmartCage data and analytics, both live in-broadcast and via the league’s OTT platform, Fight Central.
Flagship Solutions Group, an IBM Gold Business Partner and recognized provider of IBM solutions, managed services, and cloud solutions worldwide, will partner with the PFL to manage, design, and deliver the experience leveraging IBM’s technology solutions. PFL and Flagship Solutions Group will also work closely with the IBM Garage’s unique framework for enabling innovation at speed and scale through a team of leading technologies and multidisciplinary experts, to turn big ideas into tangible results.
PFL’s proprietary SmartCage measures real-time MMA fighter performance analytics along with biometric and positional data providing fans with an elevated viewing experience. Moving forward, SmartCage fight data, called Cagenomics, will be enhanced with Watson machine learning to scour data points and uncover new insights for MMA fans, bringing them inside the cage like never before.
“Every day we strive to push the sport of MMA forward and drive deeper engagement with fans by being at the forefront of technology and innovation, and this infusion of IBM’s solutions into our product through the support of Flagship Solutions Group helps take our efforts to the next level,” said Peter Murray, CEO of the Professional Fighters League. “With the implementation of IBM’s cutting-edge technology, we look forward to creating transformative experiences for fans before, during, and after PFL events across platforms, further strengthening our position as the most innovative MMA organization in the world.”
“We’re thrilled to deliver Flagship’s InfralyticsTM on IBM’s leading Cloud and AI platforms to the Professional Fighters League, an organization committed to reimagining the sport of MMA through technology and innovation,” said Mark Wyllie, CEO of Flagship Solution Group. “The solutions we are partnering to create will provide fans with a deeper, more immersive and engaging experience; one not seen in combat sports before.”
Professional Fighters League has quickly established itself as the No. 2 MMA company in the world with distribution on ESPN in the U.S. and to more than 160 countries via premium sports networks and platforms. The league has experienced tremendous YoY growth across digital channels* – 68% follower increase on Instagram, 30% total audience growth across digital and a 200% social engagement spike.
PFL’s portfolio of leading brand partners includes Anheuser-Busch InBev, GEICO, Acronis, Air Force Reserve, and Rich Energy. The U.S. Marines are the presenting partner of Inside the Season on ESPNews and ESPN+, leveraging the national platform and compelling content to engage with qualified youth considering a military career.
About Professional Fighters League
The Professional Fighters League (PFL) presents MMA for the first time in the sport- season format where individual fighters control their own destiny, competing in a Regular Season, Playoffs, and Championship. PFL’s differentiated format and exciting fights sparked breakout growth for the league. PFL events are broadcast live in primetime on ESPN2 and ESPN+ in the United States and also distributed to 160 additional countries around the world on premium sports networks.