ONE Championship has grown massively since they first launched in 2011. CCO Hari Vijayarajan and Vice President Miesha Tate were a clear crowd favourite as they championed the heroes they work with.

With offices in Singapore, Tokyo, Shanghai, New York and Beijing, ONE Championship has grown at the speed of light from their launch in 2011, becoming Asia’s largest global sports media property today. A promotional platform for martial arts, the company has a reach of 2.6 billion prospective viewers across 140+ countries to date. As the world’s largest martial arts organisation, ONE Championship publishes engaging content dispersed around various digital platforms. Their matches are watched by 40 million people globally – and, according to them, this is only just the beginning. CCO Hari Vijayarajan and Vice President, Miesha Tate gave their views at RISE on the link between Asia and martial arts as well as first-hand insights into the company’s strong values.

ONE Championship Hari Vijayarajan

Photo Credit: David Fitzgerald/RISE via Sportsfile

ONE Championship has some of the biggest names in the market as their sponsors and advertisers, including Xiaomi, Mercedes Benz, Shiseido and Grab, aiming to provide the most engaging live sports content for millennials today. “We are a billion-dollar property. We’re backed by long-term investors including Sequoia Capital, Greenoaks Capital and Temasek Holdings and we’re extremely blessed to have this long-term investor set. In the near future, we’ve got eSports on the horizon,” begins Hari at RISE.

The Singapore-based company is firmly focused on Asia’s greatest cultural treasure – martial arts, taking in everything from Taekwondo to Judo and every variation in-between. “Our founder Chatri Sityodtong has always been extremely focused on authentic storytelling,” said Hari. “When we’re telling stories about our heroes, we want to be as genuine and authentic as possible.” Martial arts has always been extolled extensively in Asia and is home to intense training regimes within the industry. “Born in Asia, we have to be very authentic about the forms of martial arts we’re showcasing.  All these forms of martial arts have roots in different parts of Asia and even the world.” Turning athletes who have lived underprivileged lives into heroes is what the team aspires to do. “We stand for values, heroes and stories,” he announced.

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Photo Credit: David Fitzgerald/RISE via Sportsfile

Their current VP, Miesha Tate, an American mixed martial arts pundit, made her way to the team in late 2018. “I love competing and martial arts. ONE Championship celebrates the values that are important to be a good person. Joining the team was being able to promote what is close to my heart – it’s an amazing feeling to be a strong female figure,” she began as she spoke on stage. Standing out from other martial arts promoters, she believes the sport suffers from massive misconceptions. “The role models that have been promoted by some organisations are not the most stand-up characters right there. They’re aggressive and rude. So, what we’re doing is cleaning this up. We’re taking the real stories of real-life heroes and sharing them with the world so that everybody can be inspired to unleash their greatness. We give people who have risen from nothing a chance to become a hero.”

ONE Championship sees their future and success in their commitment to technology. “Having a true martial arts organisation like ONE Championship that is really taking over the future, technology obviously plays a huge role in that. It’s the direction we’re looking to go towards as our company continues to grow,” said Miesha. “We just released our app a couple of months ago and it’s just gone organic. We’ve got a million downloads. Technology plays an important part in getting our message out there,” furthered Hari.

So, what’s next? Their plans to enter the US, the world’s most dependable sports market, are on the horizon. “I’m very excited about the move to the US,” Meisha told the crowd. “We don’t frown on the economically deprived; we embrace them. Because really, they are incredibly inspirational. I’m very excited to bring that to the US market and recapture a lot of the people I think has been turned off by the other antics.” With the ambition to have 100 million people watching every live match they stream in two years time, ONE Championship is definitely one to watch.

Banner Photo Credit: David Fitzgerald/RISE via Sportsfile

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