WFI acquires ownership rights to Pro Wrestling League

The WFI is working hard to find a fresh owner for the wrestling competition.

By signing a ‘settlement arrangement’ with ProSportify for Rs 30 crore, the Wrestling Federation of India (WFI) has gained ownership of the Pro Wrestling League and is negotiating terms to relaunch the event later on in the year, which has been halted.

After the debut edition in 2015, the tournament completed four seasons, gaining recognition for the overall quality which was followed by the involvement of internationally recognized players. As per sources, the renowned broadcaster, Star Sports showed interest in acquiring the championship in 2019, with a base price of Rs 60 crore.

The WFI was acting as a negotiator when COVID-19 hit, bringing all sporting events to a standstill. Following then, both the bargaining and the competition came to a halt. The WFI used to receive a ‘royalty payment’ of Rs 1 crore for the first season, increasing to Rs six crore for subsequent seasons.

A source privy to the development, said, “The settlement contract has been signed. WFI pays the amount to Sportify in instalments. It is now Federation’s property.

“The federation used the money which it had earned through royalty.”

It has also been discovered that one financial agreement instalment of Rs 4 crore is still due and would be reimbursed soon.

The WFI is working hard to find a fresh owner for the wrestling competition, which is expected to come back later this year.

A WFI official stated, “The WFI is negotiating with two-three companies. After careful consideration of all the offers, we will decide who gets the ownership. But we are keen to restart the league in the off-season later this year.”

From 2015 to 2019, six teams participated in the tournament, with the Mumbai team winning the league in both 2017 and 2018. The event showcased some of India’s finest talents, including Bajrang Punia, Vinesh Phogat, and Sakshi Malik. In 2019, the competition presented prizemoney of Rs 3 crore, with the winner receiving Rs 1.9 crore and the runner-up earning Rs 1.1 crore.

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