Mayweather vs Pacquiao: the big-money breakdown
It’s the richest fight in history but how much is it actually worth, and what can each man expect to make from it? EDGAR breaks it down blow by blow.Peter Iantorno April 29, 2015
So fight fans, the match-up we've all been waiting for is finally here. At approximately 8am on Sunday, May 3 (UAE time), Floyd Mayweather Jr. and Manny Pacquiao will step into the ring together and put on the most eagerly anticipated bout in boxing history.
The squabbles over contracts, drugs testing and broadcasting rights are settled and the reams of red tape that were holding back the fight for all these years have been cut. Finally, at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas, the world is going to get the fight it is desperate to see.
Of course, it's been well publicised (mainly by the fighters themselves - especially 'money' Mayweather) that both men stand to make an absolute fortune from the fight - possibly more than $400 million in total. By Monday, May 4, Pacquiao will have received "a cheque for $50 million as down payment, guaranteed," according to his promoter Bob Arum, in an interview he gave to the New York Times. "I will tell you this," Leonard Ellerbe, chief executive of Mayweather Promotions said by way of retort, "Floyd Mayweather's cheque will be for a lot more than $50 million."
In actual fact, the final amount the fight will raise, and how much each man will earn, won't be known until well after the final bell. At the moment it's all jostling for position and one-upmanmship, but in amongst the bombastic bravado about who is going to make the most cash, we do have a few hard facts to draw upon.
Mayweather will get more than Pacquiao
As the undefeated champion with a record of 47-0, Mayweather will, of course, be taking home the most money from the bout - irrespective of who wins. The contract states a 60/40 split in Mayweather's favour, with both men likely to make well over $100 million.
The only deviation in the contract comes, strangely, for revenue between $160 million and $180 million, where the winner of the fight will take home 51 per cent ($10.2 million) and the loser a 'paltry' $9.8 million representing 49 per cent. All revenue above and below that will be divided 60/40.
The fight has brought together quarreling TV networks
One of the major stumbling blocks to these fighters coming together was the TV rights, with Pacquiao signed to HBO and Mayweather loyal to Showtime, and the two networks rarely working together. However, especially for this fight, the rival networks agreed to both show the bout and split their cut of revenue 50/50.
“This is a unique situation, the confluence of time and event — the two biggest fighters in the world coming together,” said Ken Hershman, the president of HBO Sports. Pacquiao has an ingenious may to make some extra cash
The Filipino fighter is set to bank an extra $2.25 million for selling the advertising space on what will be an extra-long pair of shorts especially made for the fight.
"The rate for this fight is different," Pacquiao's business manager Eric Pineda told World Boxing News, "so far, we have six [companies] that will have their logos on Manny's trunks."
The biggest earner will be pay-per-view
The biggest revenue stream will come from pay-per-view (PPV) subscriptions sold to private households. With US prices set at $90 for standard definition and $100 for high-definition, and many more than the 2.5 million people who purchased Mayweather's 2007 defeat of Oscar De La Hoya expected to tune in, the PPV takings could easily surpass $300 million.
Elsewhere the PPV purse will be boosted by subscriptions from all over the world, including the £19.95 price in the UK, however, here in the UAE we can see the fight absolutely free on Du Channel 500! After the fight the global takings will be added up, HBO and Showtime will take their shared 7.5 per cent cut, and the rest will be split between the fighters.
The best of the rest
At least $35 million will be raised from international broadcast sales, plus around $12 million from sponsorships and $13 million from bars, clubs and casinos around the US for the rights to show the fight on closed circuit broadcasts.
Tickets sales - which lasted all of about 60 seconds - raised an estimated $72 million to go into the fighters' pot, however with some tickets currently on the black market attracting prices of more than $300,000, it looks like the the fighters won't be the only people making a quick buck off the bout.