If you think boxing is just a sport, you are making a serious mistake. The year is 2021 and that means only one thing – professional sport disciplines are also massive businesses and money-generation machines.
Boxing fits into the category perfectly as it drives fan engagement and attracts sponsors from a wide range of industries. The economic aspect of the sport is incredibly important because it generates huge revenue and creates job opportunities for all types of professionals.
In this post, we are going to analyze the economy of boxing and pinpoint the most important growth drivers of this global phenomenon. Let’s check it out!
Tickets Make Boxing the Business It Is Today
The first rule of boxing events is that they have to earn through tickets in order to be fully profitable. Since only a handful of fighters can attract enough spectators, organizers always set the stage for five to seven fights or more per card. This makes boxing much more interesting and it is the main reason why the average ticket comes with a hefty price tag of $209. Of course, bigger fights generate a lot more interest and make the prices go sky-high.
Bookmaking is going through serious revival because online bookies enable users to place wagers on their smartphones and computers. Boxing is one of the most important drivers of online betting, while digital casinos only make things easier for bettors. The best rated online casinos allow almost anyone to bet on boxing matches on the Internet instead of physically visiting a traditional casino or a bookie. Although relatively new, this branch represents a big portion of the boxing economy.
Boxing Is Highly Profitable
Boxing as a discipline is highly profitable because it requires minimal investments and drives maximal revenue. This is particularly the case with big events that create hype and help boost the anticipation of the fight. Bear in mind that renowned marketing companies, media outlets, and social influencers run boxing-related campaigns well in advance to make even passive boxing fans interested in a given event. It gives the boxing industry power to thrive and dominate other sports events in the same period.
TV Rights Contribute, Too
Sports channels invest some serious budgets into TV rights because the number of users willing to pay to watch fights is nearly countless. For example, viewers who felt like watching the highly anticipated bout between Floyd Mayweather and Conor McGregor had to pay a staggering $99. If you add live streaming platforms to the story, you will realize that TV rights make a massive share of the boxing industry business as a whole.
Harsh Pre-Match Negotiations
Pre-match negotiations are yet another thing that makes boxing so complex. There are many different boxing associations in the world today, with some of the most significant being WBC, WBA, IBF, WBO, and IBO. Every organization has its titleholders and when they want to fight each other, they tend to negotiate for weeks or even months. A fighter who is generally more popular will try to take the vast majority of the profit, so it’s not unusual to see failed negotiation attempts in pro boxing.
Income Discrepancy Is Huge
In boxing – just like in every other sport – incomes vary greatly based on a fighter’s popularity, ranking, and marketing potential. This means that a boxer like Floyd Mayweather Jr. could earn almost $100 million every time he steps inside the ring. On the other hand, lesser-known boxers cut and scratch to earn a living wage.
The discrepancy is huge and the whole boxing world definitely needs a revision income-wise. While it is natural to see elite boxers earning more, it doesn’t change the fact that less successful professionals deserve stronger financial support.
The Boxing Ecosystem Is Wide and Complex
Finally, you should know that the boxing ecosystem goes well beyond athletes and their teams. A wide range of professionals gain profit from boxing fights, including promoters, media outlets, F&B services, experienced bettors and so many more stakeholders. Of course, the state also receives its share through income taxes.
The Bottom Line
Boxing is so much more than just a sport – it is also a gigantic business with huge marketing potential and a wide variety of income streams. As such, boxing deserves to be treated as a genuine industry with all of its components and impact factors.