December 11, 2017 | MANILA, PHILIPPINES

Predator, ONE partner to ‘conquer new worlds’

FINDING a common vision to have the public open its eyes to trying something new and conquer new worlds, Predator Philippines, a provider of powerful and innovative gaming computers, and Asia’s biggest mixed martial arts organization ONE Championship have banded together.

Formally launched yesterday at the Higher Grounds Café in Quezon City, the tie-up between Predator and ONE will see the former as a presenting partner in the MMA group’s latest Manila foray, “ONE: Kings of Destiny.”

Happening on Friday, April 21, at the Mall of Asia Arena, Kings of Destiny will see Filipino lightweight champion Eduard “Landslide” Folayang make his first-ever defense of his ONE title against challenger Ev “E.T.” Ting of Malaysia.

Predator is the latest addition to the growing roster of ONE partners both here and abroad.

In particular, the gaming computers provider will be presenting the fight between Filipino bantamweight Kevin “The Silencer” Belingon and Toni “Dynamite” Tauru of Finland, which precedes the headlining bout.

The winner of the Belingon-Tauru fight, Predator said, will get its latest and advanced Predator 21 X laptop, a 21-inch gaming laptop with a curved screen that makes for fluid gaming. It sells for $9,000.

“We basically found a common vision with ONE Championship. We have the same belief of opening the eyes of the public to try something new, in this case electronic sports and mixed martial arts. They are not yet commonly picked up here and maybe looked at differently by some. But we want to change that perception and make it more acceptable. That’s the backbone of the partnership,” said Ray Gozon, Predator Philippines Senior Marketing Manager, in an interview with BusinessWorld at the sidelines of the partnership launch.

“We’re seeing this as a long-term partnership but we’re still finalizing the specifics to make it as such and make it impactful for both parties. For now it’s for Kings of Destiny but we’re keen on making this long term,” he added.

The Predator official went on to say that business has been doing well for them since their launch in the country last year.

“We are definitely happy with the market acceptance. We are actually surprised at the rate it has been doing. The gaming scene locally is thriving with more opportunities to seize not only in Manila but in other areas as well in the country. The consumers here are maturing as they not only look at the brand but the specific products as well,” Mr. Gozon said.

And they see their partnership with ONE Championship as further enhancing that by cultivating the gaming community here, seeing how gamers are also enjoying MMA.

“Based on our studies, gamers find attraction to, or can relate with, MMA. They can associate with the fighters and the excitement the sport brings,” Mr. Gozon said.

It is an observation that ONE heavyweight champion Brandon “The Truth” Vera agrees to.

“This partnership is ‘made in heaven.’ Fighters are gamers, too, and both ONE and Predator are tough brands,” said Mr. Vera, who was present during the partnership launch.

Kings of Destiny is the 10th stop in the country of ONE Championship since 2012.

It also features Filipinos Danny Kingad, Eugene Toquero, Gina Iniong and Robin Catalan against separate foes.