Good Evening
Good Evening

Frustrated fight viewers will get refunds, NeuLion says

Floyd Mayweather Jr. hits Conor McGregor in a

Floyd Mayweather Jr. hits Conor McGregor in a super welterweight boxing match Aug. 26, 2017, in Las Vegas. Credit: AP / Isaac Brekken

NeuLion Inc., which provided Web-streaming infrastructure for the Mayweather vs. McGregor pay-per-view boxing match, is working with the Ultimate Fighting Championship “to process refunds for purchasers who were unable to view the fight,” the Plainview company said in a government filing.

NeuLion, which has been named along with the UFC in a class-action lawsuit on behalf of viewers, acknowledged in a Securities and Exchange Commission document filed Thursday that it “experienced a problem during its streaming” of the fight on Aug. 26 that affected “a significant number of UFC.TV users.”

In the filing, NeuLion said it does not believe the glitch was “systemic or fundamental to . . . the company’s underlying technology.”

NeuLion executives did not immediately respond to requests for comment.

The fight ended in the 10th round when Floyd Mayweather Jr., 40, defeated Conor McGregor, 29, by a technical knockout. McGregor, a mixed-martial artist, made his professional boxing debut in the match, which moved Mayweather’s career record to 50-0.

NeuLion, UFC Holdings LLC, based in Las Vegas, and others were named as defendants in a class-action complaint filed Aug. 29 in U.S. District Court in Nevada.

U.S. viewers paid $99 to watch the fight, and the lawsuit said that pay-per-view sales of the fight were believed to exceed $300 million. But “thousands of consumers” who purchased the fight through, UFC.TV and the UFC app were unable to see the entire fight “due to widespread ‘outages’ allegedly as a result of the high demand,” the lawsuit said.

The lawsuit seeks unspecified damages and restitution of funds obtained by the defendants.

In its filing, NeuLion said it would mount a legal defense but it believes “the refund program will render the lawsuit moot.”

In 2016, privately held WME|IMG, based in Beverly Hills, California, and private equity partners acquired UFC for $4 billion.

Showtime Networks Inc., a unit of CBS Corp., also offered the fight via a streaming video app and was named in a separate lawsuit filed in federal court in Portland, Oregon.

Shares of NeuLion rose 1 cent to 48 cents on Friday.

More news