Daniel Cormier fights Anderson Silva during their light heavyweight mixed martial arts bout at UFC 200, in Las Vegas. (AP Photo/John Locher)
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Mixed martial arts entertainment franchise Ultimate Fighting Championship has agreed to be bought by Talent agency WME-IMG in a transaction a source valued at $4 billion, reflecting the growing popularity of a once-fringe spectator sport.The deal comes after the franchise last weekend hosted one of the biggest events in its history, UFC 200, a series of title fights, in Las Vegas.The Fertitta brothers, who bought UFC for $2 million in 2001, will hold a passive minority stake in the company after the deal closes.Barclays, Credit Suisse, Deutsche Bank, Goldman Sachs and KKR Capital Markets advised the buyers and provided financing for the deal, while The Raine Group and JP Morgan Chase & Co. were financial advisers to the sellers of UFC.
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