Just days after ProElite sent letters to their fighters’ managers stating that the company still intended to promote MMA events in 2009, the executives from Showtime and their parent company CBS filed papers with the Securities and Exchange Commission to announce that ProElite’s “tangible and intangible” assets would be sold at a public auction on November 17th in California. Assets will include fighters’ contracts, such as Kevin “Kimbo Slice” Ferguson, Jake Shields, Gina Carano, Robbie Lawler and Frank Shamrock.
The November 4th filing states:
“Showtime gave the Issuer a notice pursuant to the Security Agreement, as amended, that it intends to sell all of the Issuer’s personal property, whether tangible or intangible, to the highest bidder at a public sale. Showtime reserves its rights under the Security Agreement, as amended, and applicable lawto adjourn or cancel the sale and thereafter dispose of such property in a public or private sale or in any other manner provided by applicable law.”
After ProElite announced that they were filing for bankruptcy last month, most of their fighters exercised a clause in their contract stating that ProElite was in breach of their contract. The clause states that if the organization is unable to keep the fighters working after a 30-day notice, then the fighter has the right to terminate their contract. Most of the fighters’ managers filed notice to ProElite immediately.
However on Monday, ProElite responded to these fighters’ notices by stating that they were not completely out of the MMA business, and that they still had the rights to their fighters.
“Elite XC and ProElite are currently downsizing its staff in an effort to improve its business moving forward,” the company’s notice stated. “As this process is implemented, Elite XC canceled the event previously scheduled for Nov. 8 in an attempt to re-schedule another event in early 2009.”
With today’s events, that notice was ProElite’s attempt at buying time in order to generate some last-second funds. The company is clearly attempting to sell the rights of their fighters to other MMA promotions, instead of just letting them walk away for nothing.