Heavyweight champ Oleksandr Usyk seeks to tokenize boxers’ careers

IBF, WBO and WBA heavyweight boxing champion Oleksandr Usyk has put his weight behind a blockchain platform that aims to tokenize and support the boxing industry.

The Olympic gold medalist has teamed up with Ukrainian-based cryptocurrency exchange Qmall to develop the Ready to Fight platform. The browser-based platform makes use of blockchain technology to help boxers tokenize their brands to receive donations and investments as well as a means to deliver exclusive content.

Ready to Fight introduces a novel means of supporting and connecting the wider boxing industry. The platform features a tokenomics ecosystem making use of its proprietary RTF tokens. Qmall is using a fork of the Ethereum blockchain to develop the in-house platform.

Boxers and promising athletes are able to register on the platform. Upon creation of their tokenized identity, a supply of 1,000,000 name tokens with a unique ticker is created. The boxer name tokens are frozen until a specific release through an initial dex offering (ICO) or until the boxer collects a specific amount of donations. 

Boxers are also obliged to reinvest earnings from the platform back into their boxing name token within five years. Boxer tokens are traded exclusively with the ecosystem’s RTF token, as are goods and services that are offered on the Ready to Fight platform. RTF tokens will be available through the Qmall exchange.

A screenshot of the Ready to Fight web-based platform, which already features a number of boxers.

The Qmall team told Cointelegraph that the platform essentially gives users a stake in a chosen fighter’s prospective success. The value of the fighter tokens in relation RTF will be dependent on a fighter’s success as their careers progress and the increased community interest. 

While fans and investors can help support their favourite boxers through donations and name token purchases, the ecosystem also promises to provide the functionality for boxers to access and pay for services like professional trainers, sparring partners, physiotherapists and nutritionists and agents using accrued RTF tokens.

Cointelegraph also reached out to Usyk to find out how blockchain technology can assist boxers in funding careers in a profession that has numerous hurdles.

“The problem for many aspiring boxers is that even though they’re killing themselves in the gym, they don’t have the connections or ability to find a team that can represent them and even if they do, most importantly, few can afford it.”

The 2012 Olympic gold medallist believes blockchain-powered platforms can level the playing field, allowing boxers to build new connections through a supportive community. Boxers can focus on training while the tokenomics of the ecosystem provides an avenue to fund their careers.

Usyk explains that the cryptocurrency space is also creating new opportunities for a wide range of industries that were not possible five or ten years ago.

“I understand and respect the philosophy behind it – democratizing how people use and move money and services, it’s changing the world and can create fairer systems, with boxing being no exception.”

Usyk said he would lean on Qmall’s expertise as a cryptocurrency exchange and NFT marketplace provider to iron out the specific tokenomics of the project and its longevity.

The Qmall team also highlighted the platform’s focus on three key pillars, namely social, trade, and investment. The platform inherently functions as a social network and already features up to date original news, feature and evergreen content curated by its editorial team. The platform also aims to be a source of exclusive news and insider information from the boxing industry. 

A mobile application for the platform is currently in development for both Android and iOS devices.

The 36-year-old Ukrainian heavyweight has previously tapped into the cryptocurrency space, launching an NFT collection in August 2022 aimed at raising funds for the ongoing conflict with Russia in his country.

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