The untold truth of Floyd Mayweather

The secret to Floyd’s insane wealth

There are plenty of boxers on Planet Earth, but none can compare to Floyd Mayweather when it comes to the size of their bank account. Ever since 2007, the man has earned bigger and bigger paychecks — picking up $40 million here and $80 million there — before taking home an estimated $250 million payday for his 2015 match with Manny Pacquiao, and probably $300 million for his 50th fight. So what’s the secret to Floyd’s insane wealth?

In the mid-2000s, Mayweather was under contract with Top Rank, a promotion company run by Bob Arum. Mayweather had been doing business with Top Rank since going pro, but in 2006, he was starting to feel stifled. The boxer wanted $20 million to face Oscar De La Hoya, but Arum said no. Wanting to make the big bucks, Mayweather bought out his contract for $750,000, freeing himself from Top Rank and becoming a free agent.

After making that risky decision, Mayweather started up his own company in 2007, Mayweather Promotions, allowing him to make money as both a boxer and a promoter. Run by Leonard Ellerbe, Mayweather Promotions has made the ex-champion truckloads of cash, and when he finally faced off against De La Hoya after leaving Top Rank, he netted a whopping $25 million. Things only got crazier from there. “He earns a percentage of every ticket purchased, every pretzel consumed, every poster sold,” wrote Greg Bishop of The New York Times. “He will earn from countries that paid for broadcasting rights and the theaters where the fight is shown.”

So yeah, that’s why they call him “Money” Mayweather. Every time he steps into the ring, he starts making millions, all thanks to a gamble he took in 2006, a move that Leonard Ellerbe called “the best investment in the history of sports.”