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DDT Pro & NOAH merge to streamline costs, better compete with New Japan

Earlier this year, DDT Pro’s parent company CyberAgent purchased Pro Wrestling NOAH. The move put those two promotions and Tokyo Joshi Pro & GanPro in the digital advertising companies portfolio. Earlier this morning, a press conference was held to announce the next phase of CyberAgent’s pro wrestling plans.

The four brands will remain distinct, but will now all operate as one promotion - CyberFight. Long-time DDT President Sanshiro Takagi, who took over as President of NOAH in January, will lead the new company. NOAH’s Naomichi Marufuji and DDT’s Akito will be Executive Vice-Presidents.

At the press conference, Takagi stressed the in-ring product of DDT (which features and sometimes parodies WWE-style sports entertainment) and NOAH (which is the more traditional wrestling-as-sport produce fans associate with puroresu) will remain unchanged. He said the reason for merging as CyberFight streamline costs in the wake of COVID-19.

In a tweet announcing the move, Takagi added some promotional flare, declaring the goal is to overtake New Japan as the #1 in the industry.

The move could have ripple effects here in the States. ROH’s relationship with New Japan seems secure, and MLW switched alliances from NOAH to Dragon Gate after CyberAgent acquired the company. Impact has worked with numerous Japanese companies, and pre-pandemic WWE was aggressively pursuing a company they could use to establish NXT Japan.

We’ll probably have to wait until we’re in a post-COVID world to really see the influence of CyberFight on the industry. But you don’t have to wait to speculate!

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