Bellator President Scott Coker announced today that Jude Samuel will head Bellator’s European fighter relations, talent development and matchmaking efforts. Samuel, who most recently served as VP of Talent Relations for BAMMA in London, joins Bellator as the organization continues its global expansion with announced plans for a western Europe-based fight series.
“We are pleased to welcome Jude to the Bellator team,” said Coker. “His familiarity with the U.K. and European MMA landscape will be instrumental as we move to create a greater presence for Bellator in those markets. I look forward to working with him as we continue the overall growth of the brand and the organization.”
Samuel will continue to be based in London, where has worked in mixed martial arts for over 15 years. Prior to serving as BAMMA’s matchmaker, Samuel owned European Fight Network Sports, a site dedicated to martial arts event coverage and the development of the grappling circuit in the U.K.
“Sometimes you have to follow what you are genuinely passionate about and let that guide you to your deserving destination,” said Samuel. “Bellator is extremely passionate about the grass roots development of our beloved sport. My appointment as a U.K. and Western Europe-based matchmaker clearly states that. This is not only my opportunity, but something that will benefit the high-level athletes in Europe, and the generations of the cream of the crop athletes to follow. As a matchmaker and avid martial artist, nothing could excite me more.”
A 2x IBJJF European Champion, Samuel is one of the U.K.’s first Brazilian jiu-jitsu black belts and currently runs his academy at the Inglorious Grapplers Gym in Central London, in addition to teaching guest seminars throughout the year.