San Francisco, United States, March 22, 2022 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) —
UFC #8 flyweight fighter Matheus Nicolau signed an agreement to receive his future fight earnings in bitcoin through the payroll service, Bitwage, on March 21, 2022. Nicolau is the first Latin American athlete from the UFC to receive a salary in bitcoin.
“I am thrilled to receive my bitcoin earnings,” said Nicolau. “As an athlete, I work hard for a living, but with rising inflation, I worry that this hard work will go to waste. By using Bitwage to earn bitcoin, I know that I am guaranteeing the value of my work.”
Nicolau, a Brazilian native of Belo Horizonte, understood the importance of Bitcoin, while the market has experienced explosive growth over the last two years in South America due to economic burdens such as inflation.
“We are very bullish on Bitcoin,” commented Nicolau’s manager Vinícius Las Casas, “and we are looking to spread the gospel of Bitcoin with this latest deal.” Alongside the Brazilian fighter, his manager will also use Bitwage to receive part of his salary in bitcoin.
Bitwage is the world’s largest payroll, billing and benefits company in the Bitcoin space. Its services allow individuals and companies around the world to receive their monthly salaries in bitcoin. Bitwage is a pioneer in the payroll industry with its bitcoin 401k and lightning payroll products.
“Working with Matheus has been a rewarding experience for us,” said Jonathan Chester, CEO of Bitwage. “He’s an amazing fighter with a champion mentality.”
Nicolau is among the latest in a trend of professional athletes pioneering bitcoin deals: Professional footballers Achara Ifunanyachi and Alex Crognale made similar financial moves in 2021 with Bitwage.
MMA fighters in general, and even some of the internationally recognized superstars in the UFC, are paid in lump sums only after their events, with much of their pay dependent on successful performance and performance bonuses. Many fighters are forced to do extra work outside of their rigorous and time-consuming training regimens just to pay their training and recovery teams.
The UFC, in particular, is notorious for underestimating some of its highest-paid fighters on pay-per-view, with some of its most decorated fighters simply walking away from the organization, or seeking out and taking on well-paying cross-fight opportunities in boxing. Through Bitwage, fighters like Nicolau can be paid in bitcoin without the UFC being integrated into the service. They can focus on training, knowing their savings are safe in bitcoin.
Bitwage services are also available to the wider market. This is how it works: You register with Bitwage and receive a bank account number. You then choose the percentage of your salary you wish to receive in bitcoin and then provide your employer with the new account number. As soon as they send you the paycheck, you will receive bitcoin at an address you control. If you have not allocated 100% of your salary in bitcoin within a certain pay period, you will receive the rest of the money in your regular bank account. This is exactly how Matheus will receive his future payments from the UFC.
“Matheus represents our exponential growth trend in Latin America, with people choosing to be paid in bitcoin to preserve their hard-earned money,” said Chester.
For Nicolau and other MMA fighters who understand the value of cash and a good store of value, Bitcoin is the solution. Bitcoin will preserve your irregular earnings over time when properly custodial. It allows fighters to alleviate future career uncertainty by providing them with a sovereign wealth fund.
Nicolau lives a sequence of four consecutive victories in the UFC. This deal comes just days before Nicholas’ March 26 fight against David Dvorak in Columbus, Ohio. Win, lose or tie, your winnings will be immediately processed by Bitwage and converted to bitcoin.
Nicolau explains: “I make my money the hard way. I bleed for it. MMA is an intense sport where you put everything you’ve got. While I’m constantly struggling on the one hand, I get the feeling that I’m constantly losing money on the other. Then it occurred to me: Bitcoin is the solution. I worked with Bitwage to create this solution to ensure my work pays dividends in the future.”