Nakisa Bidarian is a former UFC CFO (chief financial officer) and Fertitta Capital CEO (chief executive officer). Bidarian concentrated on core financial projects, strategic priorities and guided the MMA promotion’s overall development as a high-level decision-maker for the UFC.
Bidarian consulted on investments with an investment group backed by the Abu Dhabi government before dabbling in mixed martial arts. When he began working with Frank and Lorenzo Fertitta, his background as a consultant, businessman, and operator came in handy.
Bidarian revealed how he met the Fertitta brothers and rose through the ranks of the promotion in an interview with the University of Waterloo’s publication.
He said, “My eventual path to UFC was not one that was calculated, but more based on a relationship that I had built with the previous owners of UFC: Frank and Lorenzo Fertitta.
“I got to know them through my time in Abu Dhabi, on the casino side of their businesses, and eventually joined them to work at the management company of Station Casinos.
“Based on my skill set and background, the Fertitta brothers offered me an opportunity to work at UFC back in 2012, which I was thrilled to take on.”
Bidarian’s most memorable moment in the UFC occurred when he played a key role in one of the greatest sporting deals in history. Bidarian led the selling of the UFC to WME-IMG in July 2016 as a high-ranking executive.
Bidarian may have retired from UFC, but he continues to compete in action sports. BAVAFA Companies and BAVAFA Sports are his creations. He also works with Triller as an executive.
In November 2020, Bidarian served as the executive producer for Triller’s first event, which included the return of boxing legends Mike Tyson and Roy Jones Jr.
BAVAFA Sports and Triller Fight Club announced their alliance earlier this year, ahead of the Jake Paul vs. Ben Askren pay-per-view event. Bidarian worked as a spokesperson and adviser to Jake Paul who is Triller’s main warrior.
However, the YouTuber-turned-pro fighter is reportedly leaving Triller to join Showtime.