Lorenzo Joseph Fertitta is an American businessman, investor, and former CEO of the Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC). Lorenzo and his brother inherited Fertitta Enterprises from their father, Frank Fertitta Jr., and established an empire upon its foundations. Together with his brother Frank III, he founded Station Casinos and guided it to its initial public offering, which raised $294 million. In addition, he expanded the brand by constructing the Palace Station Hotel & Casino and the Red Rock Casino, Resort. Later, Lorenzo and his brother established Zuffa, LLC to acquire the rights to the mixed martial arts promotion Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC). The brothers managed the company until its sale in 2016, and Lorenzo served as Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of UFC until its sale. In 2017, he and his brother also founded the private investment firm Fertitta Capital. In addition to business and finance, Lorenzo has performed numerous acts of kindness throughout his life. Locally and nationally, the Fertitta family has made numerous contributions to academic and athletic facilities for impoverished youngsters. Together with his brother, Lorenzo has participated in numerous initiatives benefiting veterans through the Fertitta Veterans Program of their organization.
Youth and Early Life
On January 3, 1969, Lorenzo Joseph Fertitta was born in Las Vegas, Nevada, United States. His father, Frank Fertitta Jr., was a businessman who began his career as a dealer and rose to management positions at the Tropicana, Sahara, and Circus casinos.
He attended Bishop Gorman High School, a Catholic preparatory school in Summerlin, Nevada, with his brother. Later in 1991, he got a bachelor’s degree in Business Administration from the University of San Diego, and in 1993, he earned an MBA from New York University’s Stern School of Business.
Lorenzo Fertitta’s Career
Lorenzo Fertitta and his brother Frank began working alongside their father Frank Fertitta Jr. at the family firm, Fertitta Enterprises, at an early age. In 1991, Lorenzo was promoted to vice president of the corporation after holding various management positions. After two years in this job, he was promoted to President and CEO in 1993 and collaborated with his brother to build the company.
In addition, he and his brother assumed responsibility for the Station Casinos, which Frank Fertitta Jr. managed until his retirement in 1993. They guided the company to its initial IPO and raised $294 million; they became the company’s major shareholders and successfully operated it until it was taken private in 2007 via a management-driven leveraged buyout.
Lorenzo and his brother established Zuffa, LLC with the intention of acquiring the assets of Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC), a prominent mixed martial arts company and live event organizer.
They acquired the properties from Semaphore Entertainment Group’s parent firm for $2 million. Lorenzo assumed the positions of Chairman and CEO of the company and appointed his childhood buddy Dana White as its President.
In February 2009, the Fertitta brothers declared Station Casino bankrupt and filed for bankruptcy. Nonetheless, the filing was challenged in court. In response to this litigation, Station Casinos filed for ‘Chapter 11’ bankruptcy in July 2009, reinvesting over $240 million to construct a new ownership structure that allowed the Fertittas to retain full control of the company.
Since then, the Station Casino has grown to 21 casinos across three states, including the Red Rock Casino, Resort & Casino, and Palace Station Hotel & Casino.
Red Rock Resorts Inc.’s initial public offering (IPO) in April 2016 under the ticker symbol ‘RRR’ raised $531,4 million. Underwriters for the issue were J.P. Morgan, BofA Merrill Lynch, and Goldman Sachs & Co, among others. The Fertittas continue to own a substantial portion of the corporation, and Lorenzo remains Vice Chairman.
Lorenzo’s Major Opera
The Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) was acquired by Lorenzo Fertitta and his brother Frank Fertitta III from Semaphore Entertainment Group for $2 million. While Lorenzo served as Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of UFC, he appointed his childhood buddy Dana White as President of UFC.
He worked diligently to establish a consistent rule for mixed martial arts (MMA) competitions across the nation, and the show is now broadcast in all 50 states and more than 150 nations. His commercial concept propelled the sport to new heights, attracting more investment and larger sponsorships from companies like as Harley-Davidson, Electronic Arts, Burger King, and Anheuser-Busch.
UFC signed a broadcasting agreement with Viacom Inc.’s Spike cable channel in 2005, which expired in 2011. Later the same year, Fox Broadcasting Company reached an agreement with UFC for $813 million and seven years of television rights.
In 2016, the Fertittas sold UFC’s rights to the renowned sports and entertainment talent agency WME-IMG for an undisclosed sum.
Lorenzo Fertitta’s Personal Life
Teresa is Lorenzo Fertitta’s wife, and they have three children together.
In addition to developing the Fertitta corporate empire, Fertitta has been actively involved in numerous charitable endeavors. He has contributed to the education and sports sectors and raised monies for the benefit of the disadvantaged.
He has also worked for veterans and contributed to organizations that support the families of soldiers who were killed or badly injured in the line of duty, such as the ‘Lone Survivor Foundation,’ ‘Fisher House,’ and the ‘Intrepid Fallen Heroes Fund.’
Estimated Net Worth
American businessman, casino operator, sports promoter, and entrepreneur Lorenzo Fertitta has a $2 billion net worth. Lorenzo Fertitta is the chairman of Fertitta Capital and a director of Red Rock Resorts Inc.
He was the principal owner of the Ultimate Fighting Championship Organization until July 2016, when he sold the firm to WME-IMG for $4 billion. From July 2000 till June 19, 2008, he was President of Station Casinos Inc.
In 2017, he rated 388th on the Forbes 400 list.
His company, Station Casino, reportedly had $5.7 billion in debt when it filed for bankruptcy in 2009.
Nicco Fertitta, Lorenzo’s son, is a Notre Dame football squad member.
Former chairman of both the Nevada Resort Association and Red Rock Resorts, Inc.
He has served as a member of the American Gaming Association’s Board of Directors and the Nevada First Bank’s Advisory Board.
He has served as the president and chief executive officer of Gordon Biersch Brewing Company and as a director of Station Casinos LLC.