According to a report by Cointelegraph, the UFC’s 15th ranked strawweight contender Luana Pinheiro will now receive her full contract salary in Bitcoin. Pinheiro, who fights out of Brazil, has announced a partnership with Bitwage to convert her salary into Bitcoin. The reports claims that she will still receive her sponsorship money in fiat payments before converting them immediately to Bitcoin via payroll service Bitwage.
Pinheiro, who is on an eight-win streak, says that she was encouraged to accept her pay in Bitcoin by her boyfriend, Matheus Nicolau, a Brazilian fighter ranked #7 in UFC’s flyweight division.
In March, according to a press release by Bitwage, Nicolau agreed to a deal to receive his future paychecks with the UFC in Bitcoin. At the time, Nicolau represented the first Latin American UFC athlete to “take a paycheck in Bitcoin.”
Here is what Nicolau said in a statement back then:
“I’m thrilled to be receiving my earnings in bitcoin. As an athlete, I work hard to earn a living for myself, but with rising inflation I worry that this hard work goes to waste. By using Bitwage to earn bitcoin, I know that I am securing the value of my work.”
Pinheiro said she was unperturbed by Bitcoin’s price fall and the recent market volatility for crypto prices. She explained that volatility also made the price move higher, before comparing her commitment to Bitcoin to training in Brazilian Jiu Jitsu.
Think about it: it takes an average of 10–15 years for an individual to obtain a black belt in Brazil in Jiu Jitsu, so my time preference here is just as long, if not longer. Everything else is just noise to me and the lower the price, the more Bitcoin I can secure for the future.
Pinheiro also claimed that she is interested in Bitcoin as a hedge against inflation. She noted that the Brazilian Real (BRL) was originally pegged 1:1 with U.S. dollars in the mid-1990s, but is now worth about 1/5th the value of a dollar.
Pinheiro joins several other UFC fighters in accepting their pay in crypto. The organization has been particularly receptive to crypto, including announcing a deal with sponsor Crypto.com to offer fan-voted bonuses in Bitcoin.