Let’s set the record straight: Conor McGregor is a champion in both the UFC and business. He’s won title belts and is a multimillionaire. But does he make money with prize winnings and his fights only? Is there more to it that we should know about?
To know how much he is worth and get to know where the money comes from, we need to look at the man himself before thinking about the money.
Who is Conor McGregor?
Conor Anthony McGregor is an Irish mixed martial artist and a former Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) featherweight and lightweight double-champion.
He was born in Dublin, Ireland, on July 14, 1988, but raised in Crumlin (a suburb of Dublin).
His life and early years are full of sports and passion for them, which means he has been fighting from a very young age:
- At the age of 12, he started training boxing at Crumlin Boxing Club and developed a passion for football.
- He did not fall behind with primary and secondary education, which he received at ‘Gaelscoil’ and ‘Gaelcholáiste,’ respectively.
- When he turned 18, he moved to Lucan, Dublin, with his family, where he was enrolled to attend an Irish-speaking school.
- During the following months, he met Tom Egan (a future UFC fighter with his fame) and began training with him in MMA (mixed martial arts).
He was born into poverty, but thanks to hard work, determination, passion for sports, and courage, he worked himself to the top.
Conor McGregor MMA Career
His MMA debut came not long after he started training. On February 17, 2007, Conor had an amateur fight against Kieran Campbell in which he rose as the winner.
After two more fights, he signed a contract with the ‘Irish Cage of Truth.’ But the main reason behind this ample opportunity lies in his debut and glorious victory against Campbell.
In 2008, his training with John Kavanagh began when he became the coach for Conor McGregor’s team at ‘Straight Blast Gym’ in Dublin.
From there on, McGregor has emerged victorious most of the time, after fighting and winning against Gary Morris on March 9, 2008. Then, against Mo Taylor, Stephen Bailey, and Connor Dillon in the same and following years.
His UFC debut in 2013 against Marcus Brimage and the victory he took home started the sensation of the man who is better known as “The Notorious” or “Mystic Mac.”
After this spectacular debut, he won two times, against Max Holloway in 2013 and Diego Brandao in 2014. But his subsequent victory is what made him a star: the first of three victories with Jose Aldo for the ‘UFC Featherweight Championship’ belt on December 12, 2015.
‘Defeat’ is a word he knows as well as victory, but not often. He has faced some defeats in the UFC, one of the firsts against Joseph Duffy for his featherweight title. Then he lost to Nate Diaz and Eddie Alvarez (the latter on November 12, 2016).
In 2016, after winning the UFC ‘Featherweight’ and ‘Lightweight Championships,’ McGregor announced that he had signed with the Ultimate Fighting Championship to become one of their highest-paid fighters ever.
In 2017, he fought against Floyd Mayweather Jr. for his professional boxing debut, which ended with a 10th-round technical knockout victory for Mayweather Jr.
Despite his loss, the fight took him to start his path to be the wealthiest MMA fighter globally and make everyone have eyes on his net worth, which is set at $180 million in 2021, according to Forbes.
In 2018, due to inactivity, McGregor was stripped of his ‘Lightweight Championship’ after the UFC 223 concluded on April 7.
But he came back for the UFC 229 to fight against Khabib Nurmagomedov for the same championship, which he lost in the fourth round.
Greatest Moments & Achievements in UFC
Conor McGregor is the first mixed martial artist in UFC history to hold two titles simultaneously. He earned those belts with his victory against Eddie Alvarez at UFC 205, making this achievement the most memorable.
Meanwhile, the knockout against Jose Also (December 2015) remains the most memorable moment in McGregor’s UFC career.
Others we have to mention are:
- April 2013: TKO (technical knockout) 1 to Marcus Brimage.
- November 2016: TKO 2 to Eddie Alvarez.
- He’s one of three fighters in UFC history to win the featherweight title.
- UFC 189: ‘Interim UFC Featherweight Championship.’
- ‘Sherdog Fighter of the Year’ (2015 and 2016).
He has won many championships (some more than once) besides the ones above, including the ‘CWFC Lightweight Championship,’ ‘Cage Warriors Fighting Championship,’ and many more.
Others like ‘Fight of the Night,’ ‘Knockout of the Night’ and ‘Performance of the Night’ awards have been won by him as well.
Becoming the Highest-Paid Athlete in 2021
The mixed martial artist is a synonym of UFC no matter where you go, but this does not mean he can’t offer anything else.
Over the years, he has made sure that his net worth does not come from fights, events, and his skills in MMA and sports only, but rather from many sources at once. Then, should you consider him to be more than a fighter? Absolutely.
To start with, “Mystic Mac” is the owner of many companies. He has founded several, and he’s also a co-owner in some, one of them being Proper No. Twelve whiskey brands (although McGregor sold his majority stake to Proximo Spirits in April 2021 for $150 million).
He started this company as a partnership between him and Dermot Desmond, who had previously invested into the Irish athlete’s ventures such as his clothing line and gym.
In October 2018, the entrepreneur also joined the board of his friend’s company- ‘Big Baller Brand’; a sports brand whose best-known product is the highly controversial BBB shoes priced at $495 a pair.
This makes him one of only two people to serve on both the UFC and the Big Baller Brands board.
Besides entrepreneurship, he surprised everyone when getting involved in an Irish director’s film called “Notorious,” which is about his life and put him not only in the spotlight (even more) but brought more revenue his way.
The famous clothing line called ‘August McGregor’ is also worth mentioning.
It has been in the market since 2016, thanks to the fashion partnership with tailoring brand David August, and is now available in over 120 stores around the world, with net revenue of $14 million.
He is a successful businessman thanks to his investments as well; he has been the owner of over 20 residential and commercial properties, some of which are in Ireland.
This includes houses for himself and his family members and buildings that have been rented out since they gained value due to McGregor’s fame (as an example – one building was recently rented out for $12.000 per month).
According to Forbes, $22 million out of the $180 million were earned from prize winnings only. However, the sale of his majority stake of whiskey Proper No. Twelve is what put him at #1 among the wealthiest athletes globally and from where he obtained most of his money over the last 12 months.
Another part of his net worth comes from the endorsements and sponsorships he constantly renews:
- Reebok, with whom he renewed his sponsorship deal in 2018, allows him to make (approximately) $5 million every year.
- Burger King, Monster Energy, Wynn Resorts, and Beats by Dre are included among the endorsements.
- Beetroot Lab, DraftKings, and Roots of Fight are part of the main sponsors of the fighter.
An Increasing Net Worth
Conor McGregor’s net worth has grown significantly in the last few years thanks to his MMA career that continues to leave everyone speechless.
But also, because of his businesses and other ventures, one can wonder how much it will be in a few more years if he keeps adding new projects.
He may not earn his fortune from sports and MMA alone, and considering that he has lost a few fights since he returned to action, he is not getting a better salary than the one he already has.
But is it indispensable to aim for a better one? $22 million is not a bad deal, and one thing is for sure: he knows how to manage all his finances and bet for new opportunities.
The fighter has been asked several times about his net worth and his plans. During the press conference for Dustin Poirier UFC 264 fight, he predicted he would be a billionaire when he is 35.
This leaves one thing clear: he is not over and already thinking of new ways to increase his net worth and, of course, taking action to get there.
Best Conor “The Notorious” McGregor Quotes
- “I’m just going to keep doing what I’m doing. Keep proving people wrong and proving myself right.”
- “You’re damn right I’m in it to make money. This is prizefighting; I’m in it to get rich, fast. And then I’m in it to get out.”
- “I’m cocky in prediction. I’m confident in preparation. But I’m always humble in victory or defeat.”
- “In a ruthless business, I am the most ruthless.”
“If you want to be the best, then get comfortable with being uncomfortable.”
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