Pride Fighting Championships (Pride or Pride FC for short) was the biggest(MMA) organization in the world, based in Japan. Its inaugural event was held at the Tokyo dome on October 11, 1997. Pride has held more than 60 mixed martial arts events. As one of the most popular MMA organizations in the world during its ten years of operation, Pride broadcast to about 40 countries worldwide. Pride also held the largest live MMA event audience record of 91,108 people at the Pride and K-1 co-production, Shockwave/Dynamite held in August 2002 as well as the audience record of over 67,450 people at Pride Final Conflict 2003.
In March 2007, DSE sold Pride to Lorenzo Fertitta and Frank Fertitta III, co-owners of Zuffa, which owns the UFC. While remaining legally separate entities with separate managements, the two promotions were set to cooperate in a manner akin to the AFL-NFL merger. However, such an arrangement did not materialize, and in October 2007, Pride Worldwide's Japanese staff was laid off, marking the end of the organization as an active fight promoter. As a result many of the Pride staff left to form DREAM alongside K-1 parent company FEG.