Conor McGregor is leading the charge to become the next billionaire athlete in sports after selling his remaining stake in his Proper No. Twelve whiskey company.
Former UFC lightweight champion McGregor, 32, earned roughly $48m from his fighting career and businesses before tax last year, landing him at No. 53 on the Forbes rich list of the world’s highest-paid athletes for 2020, two places ahead of his closest rival in combat sports, Anthony Joshua, the WBA, WBO, IBF and IBO boxing heavyweight champion of the world.
But now ‘The Notorious’ has nearly doubled his coffers after cashing in on his whiskey company in an eyewatering deal said to be worth $600m. He will split the profits with his agent Audie Attar and their partner Ken Austin while seeing his personal fortune increase to nearly $300m for his efforts.
McGregor, the highest-paid fighter in UFC history, has made $110m during his 13-year career as a professional mixed martial artist and expects to become a billionaire by the time he turns 35, which will be in 2023.
In doing so, he will gain membership into an exclusive club which includes the likes of Michael Jordan, Tiger Woods, Floyd Mayweather and football superstars Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo among its members.
Not even WBC heavyweight champion Tyson Fury can come close, with his total net worth a paltry £40m by comparison, a significant portion of which came from his rematch with Deontay Wilder in February 2020 at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas.
While McGregor is no longer a majority shareholder in the company, he will continue to play an active role in the development of the brand.
“The terms of the agreement are confidential,” said his spokeswoman Karen J Kessler, whose Evergreen PR company represents the Irishman. “However, the most important thing is Conor McGregor will remain a stakeholder of Proper No. Twelve, the brand that will make him a billionaire.”
In typical fashion, McGregor reacted the news in signature style, posting a picture of him raising a glass of Proper Whiskey with the following caption:
‘In just under three years, we went from a dream to the biggest Irish whiskey in the world.’
‘A HUGE step for Proper No. Twelve today as we now forge ahead to the next phase of our company’s history.’
McGregor, meanwhile, is set to face Dustin Poirier in a trilogy fight at UFC 264 at the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas.