Ari Emanuel, the owner of the mixed martial arts promotion company UFC, has called out other bullies but not Dana White, his own company president, who was infamously caught on a now-viral video slapping wife Anne White on New Year’s eve in a Mexican bar.
A subsidiary of Endeavor Group Holdings, UFC is the largest MMA promotion company in the world as of 2011. Endeavor’s stock went down almost 6 percent on Tuesday, Dec. 3 to trade at $20.67, according to Google Finance. The stock subsequently rose slightly and is trading at $21.24 as of this writing.
In 2010, Emanuel fired WME Entertainment client Mel Gibson after the actor was recorded using racist slurs against the mother of his child. Emanuel emailed his partner Patrick Whitesell, saying that “we can’t represent a guy who said the N-word,’” Deadline reported.
The Warner Bros. Discovery network has postponed for a week the premiere of a new reality TV series, “Power Slap: Road To The Title,” following the incident. Power Slap is a new sports league created by White and others that focuses on competitive open-handed striking.
The league was created in partnership with UFC and Endeavor featuring competitors from around the world competing. The timing of Dana White’s wife-slap prompted some on social media to speculate that the whole thing was just for publicity.
Others called out White and others for being silent. “Racist punk Dana White has been caught on video slapping his wife around at a club,” ProfessorBlackTruth tweeted. “Ari Emmanuel’s company Endeavor OWNS the UFC and employs White. Ari had so much to say about Kanye but since this story broke he’s been MIA. BTW, where’s MeeToo/Time’sUp?”
White said he and his wife have apologized to each other and he told TMZ, who obtained the video of the slap, “You’ve heard me say for years, there’s never ever an excuse for a guy to put his hands on a woman.”
Endeavor’s 6-percent share decrease outpaced losses in the broader market. White sold his 10 percent stake in the UFC to Endeavor Group in 2021. However, he is still president of the UFC and has been for more than 20 years.
Dana White has spoken out about domestic violence before and has said the UFC screens people for domestic violence.
After former NFL running back Ray Rice was charged in 2014 with assaulting his fiancee, Dana White said you “don’t bounce back from putting your hands on a woman … Been that way in the UFC since we started here.”
When Kanye tweeted that he wanted to go “death con 3” on Jewish people, Emanuel wrote a column for the Financial Times, arguing that the rapper’s mental illness was no excuse for his behavior, Page Six reported. “Those who continue to do business with West are giving his misguided hate an audience. There should be no tolerance anywhere for West’s anti-Semitism,” Emanuel wrote. “This is a moment in history where the stakes are high and being open about our values, and living them, is essential. Silence and inaction are not an option.”
Images: Ari Emanuel, June 7, 2016, Financial Times, https://www.flickr.com/photos/financialtimes
Dana White, UFC 189 World Tour, March 30, 2015, Andrius Petrucenia, https://www.flickr.com/photos/andriux_uk_events/