• MMA defending heavyweight champion Francis Ngannouhe said he would be taking half his earnings for an upcoming fight in bitcoin
  • The champion said he is partnering with Cash App and would also be giving away $300,000 worth of bitcoin to fans

French Cameroonian mixed martial artist and defending heavyweight world champion Francis Ngannou said Tuesday he would be taking half of his earnings for an upcoming fight in bitcoin.

Ngannou, who made the announcement via Twitter, said he was partnering with the peer-to-peer payments platform Cash App to manage the payments. The champion also said he would be giving out $300,000 worth of bitcoin to fans.

The UFC 270 fight, which is expected to be broadcast live on pay-per-view on Jan. 22, will feature the heavyweight title fight against Ngannou and interim champion Ciryl Gane. It is expected to be the last fight on Ngannou’s contract.

“After doing a lot of research on bitcoin, I really believe that is the future of money,” said Ngannou in a short video. “Bitcoin is valuable, secure and no one can mess with it. I want to make bitcoin more accessible to you all.”

The UFC, with a fan base estimated to be 625 million people, has itself partnered with Crypto.com which will place its brand on apparel worn by mixed martial arts athletes and become integrated into UFC content on platforms including live broadcasts, pay-per-views and UFC-owned social media channels.

In September, Cash App announced it had reached 70 million annual transacting active users and had posted $1.8 billion in bitcoin revenue for the third quarter, according to a recent earnings letter.

Ngannou’s announcement follows NBA athlete Klay Thompson declaring last week that he would take part of his salary in bitcoin also through the use of Cash App’s platform.

“I’m with bitcoin because I believe it’s the future of money,” said Thompson via his Twitter account.

Other sports stars who have signed crypto-related endorsement deals in recent months include, MLB Star Shohei Ohtani and Stephen Curry, three-time NBA champion with the Golden State Warriors.

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  • Blockworks
    Senior Reporter, Asia News Desk
    Sebastian Sinclair is a senior news reporter for Blockworks operating in South East Asia. He has experience covering the crypto market as well as certain developments affecting the industry including regulation, business and M&As. He currently holds no cryptocurrencies. Contact Sebastian via email at [email protected]