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New world Supercross series revealed

SX Global, the Australian company that recently earned the exclusive rights to manage and promote the FIM Supercross World Championship, today unveiled plans for the comprehensive global championship series. Featuring an independent team ownership model, unprecedented financial support for teams and riders, expanded opportunities for global and local sponsors and innovations to elevate the broadcast and in-stadium experience; the FIM Supercross World Championship represents the most progressive and ambitious platform to elevate the sport and expand its appeal across the world. 

The series will feature a highly exclusive structure, with only 10 team licenses available to independent owners, and an unparalleled level of financial support for teams, including seed funding for every team entering the series, appearance fees at every event, and logistics and freight support throughout the series. In total, more than $50 million has been designated specifically for team and rider support over five years. In addition, the independent ownership model opens the door for significant sponsorship opportunities on global and local event levels.

The global series will feature the richest prize purses in the sport’s history, with a total of $250,000 up for grabs at each event. The FIM Supercross World Championship will follow the established two-class format, with each team fielding four riders – two in the WSX (450cc) class, and two in the SX2 (250cc) class. Furthermore, every event will allow for two wildcard entries in each class, providing opportunities for local riders and sponsor-driven exemptions to round out the 22-rider field. SX Global also plans to deliver an elevated experience for fans, through unique race formats, broadcast innovations, and in-stadium attractions that elevate the overall entertainment experience. 

Plans for the global championship series were underscored today by the news of Mubadala Capital’s investment in SX Global, bringing an unprecedented level of financial support and development resources on behalf of the FIM Supercross World Championship. Mubadala Capital, the asset management arm of Mubadala Investment Company, a sovereign investor with $243 billion in assets under management, brings a wealth of experience in funding the development of global business and sports ventures. 

“There is a massive fanbase and untapped demand for supercross outside the United States and backed by the financial support and significant resource of Mubadala Capital, we intend to feed that, bringing the sport to new regions through the most exciting and lucrative world championship series in the history of the sport,” said Tony Cochrane, president of SX Global. “We have created an entirely new model for supercross: one that emphasises expanded financial support and opportunities for riders and teams, expanded opportunities for sponsorship and an elevated experience for fans.”

The FIM Supercross World Championship will take place annually, in the second half of the year. With plans for five events from September through November, 2022 will serve as a ‘pilot’ season, allowing the series to establish itself and build momentum. 2023, and subsequent years, will see the series expand annually between June and November. 

While professional supercross has seen success in the United States for decades, there has yet to be a definitive global series to lay claim to a true FIM-sanctioned world championship. Highly-successful events are held throughout Europe and Australia every year, normally around September–December. However, these events are not currently linked by any official FIM ‘championship’ status, and this remains a significant untapped opportunity for the sport’s ongoing credibility and evolution, as well as a significant opportunity for riders and teams to expand their influence and financial prospects.

“Over the years, there have been various attempts to build a true world championship series for supercross, but none of them have succeeded, due to deficiencies in funding and resource, lack of global and regional relationships and a variety of other factors,” said Adam Bailey, managing director, Motorsport, for SX Global. “Our team possess the necessary supercross and international event background, relationships and expertise, and the funding to make this world championship a reality.”

SX Global brings a team of highly qualified motorsports and entertainment executives, armed with the experience to successfully deliver a series of this magnitude. SX Global President, Tony Cochrane, spearheaded the development and success of V8 Supercars, an Australian-based auto racing series that became one of Australia’s most successful motorsports, eventually expanding with events in Shanghai, the United States, Bahrain, Abu Dhabi and New Zealand. In addition, proven supercross event veterans Adam Bailey and Ryan Sanderson have been the driving force behind Australia’s highest-profile supercross offering, the AUS-X open. The duo has promoted five years of consecutive sold out AUS-X Open events in Sydney (2015-2018) and Melbourne (2019), along with successful events in Auckland, New Zealand in 2018 and 2019.

“Our entire careers have been driven by a passion for motorsport and entertainment, and our motivations are as pure as they come: to continue to evolve and elevate our sport and its incredible athletes to new levels of global relevance and success,” said Ryan Sanderson, managing director, Commercial, for SX Global. “Our aim is to take the amazing sport of supercross global and reveal its greatness to millions of new fans all over the world.” 

About SX Global: Based in Queensland, Australia, SX Global is a collective of world class sports marketing and entertainment experts who operate globally within the motorsports and entertainment industries. Considered the “founding father” of the modern era of Australian motor racing, Tony Cochrane leads the SX Global team as president, bringing more than 45 years of experience in developing and managing successful motorsports series and events. Managing Directors, Adam Bailey, a former competitive rider, and Ryan Sanderson, bring extensive proven experience in supercross event development, management, and promotion after five years of successfully delivering the largest action sports and supercross event in the southern hemisphere, the AUS-X Open. 

MUBADALA CAPITAL BACKS SX GLOBAL

Mubadala Capital, the asset management subsidiary of Mubadala Investment Company, one of the world’s leading sovereign investors with US$243 billion of assets under management,today announced its investment in SX Global, an Australian company established to develop, promote, and commercialize the FIM Supercross World Championship.

Mubadala Capital has established a track record of successfully investing in category leaders across sports, media, and entertainment—including EMI Music Publishing, Endeavor Group Holdings, Reigning Champs, Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) and the Yankees Entertainment and Sports Network (YES Network), among others—and this investment continues its history of backing world-class management teams in building differentiated global sports, media and entertainment businesses.

Mubadala Capital’s investment will support SX Global’s expansion plans for supercross and its efforts to capitalize on the exclusive rights it has secured from the Fédération Internationale de Motocyclisme (FIM) to manage and promote the new FIM Supercross World Championship, bringing the exciting sport of off-road motorbike racing to fans across the globe in a new competitive format.

“Our commitment to SX Global and the FIM Supercross World Championship builds on our strategy and track record of selectively investing in premier content properties with strong global appeal,” said Adib Martin Mattar, Head of Private Equity at Mubadala Capital. “We expect that our investment in SX Global will introduce the exciting sport of professional supercross to a global audience and build lasting value by delivering an authentic, exciting and fan-centric experience.”

SX Global’s President, Tony Cochrane, added, “We’re proud to partner with Mubadala Capital, a company that shares our vision and global aspirations for the FIM Supercross World Championship. With the international reach, resources, and business building experience of Mubadala Capital alongside us, we’re looking forward to establishing FIM Supercross World Championship as a leading global motorsport and entertainment property.”

Representing Mubadala Capital on the SX Global Board of Directors will be Matt Kim and Russ Pillar, who collectively bring decades of experience backing and leading global sports, media, and entertainment companies. They will be joining Tony Cochrane, SX Global’s President; Adam Bailey, SX Global’s Managing Director (Motorsport); Ryan Sanderson, SX Global’s Managing Director (Commercial); Tom Potter, Rush Sport & Entertainment; and Tavo Hellmund, Founder, Event Partners Marketing, on SX Global’s Board of Directors.

In December 2021, the FIM awarded SX Global the exclusive organisational and commercial rights to stage, manage and promote the FIM Supercross World Championship. Under the leadership of the SX Global Team, and with the financial backing and support of Mubadala Capital, Supercross will become a true global sports property, competing on a legitimate international platform for the first time in history. The FIM Supercross World Championship will commence in late 2022.

Mubadala Capital

Mubadala Capital is a wholly owned asset management subsidiary of Mubadala Investment Company, a leading global sovereign investor headquartered in Abu Dhabi. In addition to managing its own balance sheet investments, Mubadala Capital manages over $10 billion of third-party capital on behalf of institutional investors in all its businesses, including three private equity funds, two early-stage venture funds, a public fund, and two funds in Brazil focused on special situations.

Mubadala Capital and its affiliated entities have a long track record of owning and/or operating globally recognized sports, media, entertainment and premium content and services properties including EMI Music Publishing, Endeavor Group Holdings, Reigning Champs, Ultimate Fighting Championship, and the Yankees Entertainment and Sports Network.

SX GLOBAL – BOARD

Matt Kim – Non-Executive Board Member

  • Matt Kim is a Senior Principal at Mubadala Capital and leads the team’s sports, media and entertainment investment activities. He possesses over a decade of investment experience, and prior to joining Mubadala Capital, Mr. Kim was an investment professional at Bank of America Capital Advisors, where he focused on evaluating private equity investment opportunities globally.

Mr. Kim graduated from Boston University with a B.S. in Business Administration with concentrations in Finance and Entrepreneurship and is a CFA charter holder.

Russ Pillar – Chairperson

  • Russ Pillar is a Senior Advisor and Operating Partner of Mubadala Capital where he initiates, evaluates, and manages investment opportunities globally. He is a tenured sports/media/consumer CEO, with executive roles across the Virgin Entertainment Group, Prodigy Internet, the CBS Internet Group, the Viacom Media Group, the Los Angeles Marathon, and Reigning Champs, among others.

Mr. Pillar previously held directorship roles for more than three dozen private and publicly traded sports, media, retail, entertainment, and technology/tech services companies. A Phi Beta Kappa cum laude graduate of Brown University with an A.B. in East Asian Studies, he also is a Henry Crown Fellow at The Aspen Institute and a member of the Aspen Global Leadership Network.

Tony Cochrane AM – President

  • Tony Cochrane’s passion and experience forge a formidable combination and have ultimately resulted in some unforgettable milestones in entertainment and sport generally over the past 45 years both in Australia and on the global stage. 

Over the past 45 years with partners and solo, Tony has produced and promoted over 400 sporting and entertainment events throughout the world, sold in excess of 25,000,000 tickets with gross sales exceeding two billion dollars, and written nearly $250,000,000 in sponsorship sales. 

In his time as Executive Chairman of V8 Supercars, Tony Cochrane was considered the founding father of the ‘modern’ era of motor racing in Australia, the touring car category that was arguably amongst the world’s best. During this period, V8 Supercars had an extraordinary rise to the top of sport within Australia and on the world motorsport scene. It became a multi-million dollar industry under his strong leadership. His credits and performance in world motorsport are uniquely recognised both in Australia and overseas. He holds an FIA acknowledgement and an Order of Australia for his contributions. 

Tony Cochrane’s passion and experience forge a formidable combination and have ultimately resulted in some unforgettable milestones in entertainment and sport generally over the past 45 years both in Australia and on the global stage.

Over the past 45 years with partners and solo, Tony has produced and promoted over 400 sporting and entertainment events throughout the world, sold in excess of 25,000,000 tickets with gross sales exceeding two billion dollars, and written nearly $250,000,000 in sponsorship sales. 

In his time as Executive Chairman of V8 Supercars, Tony Cochrane was considered the founding father of the ‘modern’ era of motor racing in Australia, the touring car category that was arguably amongst the world’s best. During this period, V8 Supercars had an extraordinary rise to the top of sport within Australia and on the world motorsport scene. It became a multi-million dollar industry under his strong leadership. His credits and performance in world motorsport are uniquely recognised both in Australia and overseas. He holds an FIA acknowledgement and an Order of Australia for his contributions. 

Adam Bailey – Managing Director – Motorsport

  • Adam’s experience in Supercross began as a competitor in the early 90s. He established an athlete and event management agency in 2005 that represented some of the most respected athletes and brands in this space. These networks led to valuable and unique international industry relationships. 

Launching AME Management with Ryan Sanderson in 2012, the duo combined their experience to establish a boutique sports marketing agency in Australia and launched AUS SX Holdings and the AUS-X Open event in 2015. The events went on to achieve sell-out crowds annually for five years including the successful creation and expansion of the FIM Oceania Supercross Championship into New Zealand in 2018 and 2019. Adam leads key aspects of brand creative strategy, content, industry partnerships, international talent and operations. 

A creative marketer, many of Adam’s unique PR, marketing and content strategies have helped see the events become recognised and respected, globally. 

Ryan Sanderson – Managing Director – Commercial

  • Ryan spent five years at V8 Supercars Australia under Tony Cochrane’s reign. In Ryan’s tenure as Sponsorship Manager, he serviced some of Australia’s largest sponsorship properties, managing over 20 V8 Supercars Championship partners, with over $22M in annual spend. 

Ryan and Adam launched AME, a sports marketing agency together in 2012 and then sold-out Supercross events in Australia & New Zealand from 2015 – 2019. 

Ryan secured major commercial partnerships for both AUS-X Open & S-X Open Auckland Supercross events including Monster Energy, Australian Tourism & State Government funding, Boost Mobile, Michelin, Komatsu, Castrol & Repco/NAPA. Ryan developed leading entertainment, fan engagement and innovative commercial experiences, as well as international TV broadcast distribution including IMG, Seven Network, Fox Sports Australia, CBS, Eurosport & Fox Asia to over 382 million homes. 

Ryan brings a unique skillset to SX Global and has extensive international broadcast, promoter and commercial partnership networks globally. 

Tom Potter – Non-executive Director | Europe

  • A former racing commercial veteran of McLaren and Williams F1, Tom founded Rush Sport & Entertainment in 2010 which has grown internationally to become one of the most successful businesses in motorsport sponsorship and marketing services whilst also delivering record-breaking deals for other major entertainment properties such as The Rolling Stones. Rush is responsible for placing over $500M sponsorship of F1, Formula E and IndyCar properties since 2016 alone. Rush has helped identify, structure, negotiate, activate and measure sponsorship investments for brands including Petrobras, Mercedes-Benz, Prudential, IHG, Marriott, Avis, Renesas, Adecco (Modis), Progressive and Saudi Aramco. 

Few can boast the level of energy, insight and understanding of global motorsports’ commercial landscape and entertainment value. Tom is an expert at leveraging sports marketing and the sports business environment to create value and accelerate growth. 

Tavo Hellmund – Non-executive Director | North America

  • Tavo Hellmund was the founder of the FIA Formula-1 United States Grand Prix in Austin, Texas, the co-founder of the FIA Formula-1 Mexican Grand Prix and a co- founder of the Circuit of the Americas race track in Austin, Texas. Tavo Hellmund has been the founder and President/Managing Partner of Full Throttle Productions, LP, Event Partners Marketing, LLC, Grand Prix Partners, LLC and Tavo Hellmund Inc. since 1994.

These companies manage and provide event project management, day of event oversight, staffing/volunteer services, venue planning, consulting and logistics support, marketing, sales, sponsorship, public relations and consultation services for sporting and special events around the world. Tavo Hellmund’s global event production experience includes brokering, sanctioning, producing or promoting over 150 sporting and entertainment events, which have generated more than 1.5 billion dollars in sales.

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