The Fuel TV cable network continued to see ratings growth last month thanks in large part to its Ultimate Fighting Championship programming.
According to a release from Fuel TV, the network once again is the fastest growing cable network in television. Fuel TV picked up the largest percentage increases in total viewers, year-to-year, again in April and also holds that mark for 2012 among all ad-supported cable channels.
Fuel TV put on 340 hours of UFC content in April, including the live UFC on Fuel TV: Gustafsson vs. Silva from Stockholm, Sweden. That card, with a main event between Sweden's Alexander Gustafsson and Thiago Silva, was the most watched day and program in Fuel's target demographic history. The 340 hours of UFC programming also set a new best for the channel, which had 233 hours of UFC in Febraury and 213 hours in March.
"We’re elated that Fuel TV continues to see incredible ratings gains as a direct result of our UFC partnership, especially the live event audiences,” said George Greenberg, executive vice president and general manager of Fuel TV. "I look forward to more live fights, as well as all-new UFC shoulder programming, that continue to help our Fuel TV brand grow in ratings."
Fuel's next live card is May 15 when UFC on Fuel TV: Korean Zombie vs. Poirier takes place in Fairfax, Va., just outside Washington, D.C. That card features a main event featherweight contenders fight between Chan Sung Jung and Dustin Poirier.
Some Fuel TV April 2012 ratings highlights:
* April 2012 was up 260 percent in total viewers and 450 percent in M18-49 vs. April 2011
* Prime time viewership grew 275 percent on total viewers and 250 percent among M18-49 compared to April 2011
* Late night finished up 767 percent on total viewers and 1,000 percent among M18-49 from April 2011
* UFC on Fuel TV: Gustafsson vs. Silva on April 14 delivered the most-watched day in network history with an average of 71,000 total viewers and 44,000 M18-49, up 1,320 percent and 2,100 percent, respectively, vs. April 2011
* UFC on Fuel TV: Gustafsson vs. Silva on April 14 was the second most-watched program in network history with 197,000 total viewers, and the most-watched telecast in network history among the target demo of M18-49 with 142,000
* April 2012 was the network’s second most-watched month ever, behind February 2012
* For the first four months of 2012, prime time viewership is averaging an increase of 209 percent over 2011, and total day is up 125 percent compared to 2011.
In 2012, Fuel TV telecasts more than 2,000 hours of UFC programming, with more than 100 hours of live fights, weigh-ins, preliminary bouts and pre- and post-fight shows – more UFC programming than any network has ever offered. Fuel TV, a member of the Fox network, began UFC programming in 2012 after the UFC's seven-year broadcast deal with Fox. The cable network plans to air in the neighborhood of 2,400 hours of total UFC content in 2012.