Pancrase just announced a new business deal with World Series Of Fighting, the third-largest MMA promotion in the United States, which means that Pancrase CEO Masakazu Sakai will start up WSOF Japan with the new license agreement. WSOF Japan will hold WSOF events in Japan, and they can also run events like "Road to WSOF."
Also with this deal, Pancrase has changed itself. The promotion will use a WSOF-style cage and Unified Rules for its numbered series events. Kings of Pancrase (champions) automatically have the right to fight for WSOF. Upper-tier ranked fighters can also fight for WSOF with permission from Pancrase.
Japanese fighters must go through Pancrase in order to fight for WSOF, but Pancrase fighters will still have the freedom to choose to fight for another major organization (UFC or Bellator) in the United States if there is an offer.
Explain deal at video (Japanese)
I examine this type of decision because, in Japan, most organization leaders aren't willing to risk trying to expand their promotions' notoriety to fans and other promoters outside of the country.
Sakai is working hard in that regard both inside and outside of Japan. That should earn him praise because most Japanese MMA promoters normally don't even try to do so. They just continue to shrink their organizations.
Big thanks to Robert Sargent (MMA Rising) for English editing.