Charles Champion Interview – Part 1

As had been previously reported, former Pro Elite chairman Douglas DeLuca resigned from the promotion; now we know who has taken his place at Pro Elite – Charles Champion.  Champion, prior to taking over DeLuca’s responsibilities, was already the CEO of Pro Elite.  Sam Caplan of managed to get an interview with Champion, discussing several subjects, including but not limited to the resignation of DeLuca and former EliteXC Live Events President Gary Shaw.  Below are some excerpts from Part 1 of a 2-part interview:

Sam Caplan: I wanted to ask you about the recent resignations of both Doug DeLuca and Gary Shaw. Is there than meets the eye or were they something that’s been planned for awhile? In short, what’s your perspective on the two resignations?

Chuck Champion: They are two resignations in the context of a much bigger plan for ProElite. And I can tell you that both resignations were voluntary, and what personal factors entered into them I will direct you back to DeLuca and Shaw. These guys started this company approximately 18 months ago after having thought about it for three or four months before that so it’s been a two year journey.

They’ve taken the company to the level it’s at. They’ve brought a tremendous number of assets. They’ve brought in a great fight team and other good executives into the company. And they’ve positioned the company extremely well to go to the next step and this is part of that process. It’s a public company and they recognize that their skill sets are around startups and a love of the sport and they don’t want to see ProElite do anything but succeed.

Collectively, we all believe bringing in now additional help with different requisite skill sets to take this company to the next level and insure its success on a road that has had many, many failures.

Sam Caplan: In regards to Shaw, even before the resignation, it seemed as though his role within the company had been reduced. His son, Jared Shaw, a Vice President with the company, had mentioned that it was Gary Shaw’s decision to take a step back. Was that true or was there encouragement from the company for Gary to take a step back?

Chuck Champion: Gary Shaw will be the first to tell you that he is an entrepreneur and that living in a public company is an entirely different world. Adapting to that world was something that Gary was working on. It wasn’t always the most comfortable place. But Gary has been exceedingly successful in virtually everything he’s tried, and I would include this (MMA).

I think I’d rather have Gary speak to some of the personal issues around what kind toll this took on his life in terms of family, friends, his other business in boxing, and the rest of it. And to also have him talk about what it was like to make a change from working in an entrepreneurial world to having to work in an intra-prenurial role as an executive of a large public company.

There’s no secret that Gary and I, for example, went head-to-head and toes-to-toes over a number of issues. But those issues have frankly been resolved in the best interest of the company. And I can tell you that I have a tremendous amount of respect of what Gary has done for this company and what Gary will do for this company on a forward basis.

Sam Caplan: I wanted to know if you could elaborate on your answer about the difficulty Gary Shaw faced in going from an entrepreneurial role to an intra-prenurial role.

Chuck Champion: Sure. This guy has had nothing his entire life given to him. Nothing. Everything Gary Shaw has in his life, he’s earned or he’s been in a battle with someone else and he’s taken it. And the one thing that Gary Shaw is not is a lap dog, and certainly not a lap dog to millionaires. Shaw is who Shaw is and his successes are ones that he’s made. But again, he’s nobody’s lap dog; he’s not my lap dog. He ain’t a lap dog for nobody, including billionaires.

To read the rest of Part 1 of this interview, click here.  For Part 2 of this interview with Champion, stay tuned to Octagon Buzz.

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One Response to “Charles Champion Interview – Part 1”

  1. […] Octagon Buzz posted Part 1 of an interview with Charles Champion, the newly appointed chairman of Pro Elite (parent company of EliteXC); today is part 2 of the […]

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