UFC fighter pay has been a contentious topic for many years now. One byproduct of this is that fighters are increasingly looking to launch businesses in an effort to supplement their income when not competing in the cage. Unsurprisingly, some efforts have been more successful than others.
Typically, the more popular a fighter is, the better their business performs. This has become evident due to the success experienced by the likes of Conor McGregor and Jorge Masvidal's ventures in the world of business. When done properly, these types of endeavors can be incredibly lucrative for the fighters involved.
Here are five of the most successful businesses owned by UFC fighters:
#5. GAME UP Nutrition - Nick & Nate Diaz
Those familiar with the UFC are likely unsurprised to hear that Nick and Nate Diaz have launched a top-shelf CBD company. GAME UP Nutrition offers a variety of CBD products, and due the guidance of the company's founders, all of their items are organic and vegan.
The company boasts a wide range of CBD oils, hemp flowers and CBD pre-rolls. While it may not be as visible as some of the other fighter-owned companies on this list, the Diaz brothers' loyal fanbase undoubtedly supports the project in force.
Inside the cage, both men's futures remain uncertain after they each fought in 2021. Nate appears as though he may soon be competing outside of the UFC, while Nick currently seems more to continue to fight inside the octagon.
#4. Gamebred FC - Jorge Masvidal
Former UFC welterweight title challenger Jorge Masvidal has a number of projects outside of the octagon. One of these is the Gamebred Fighting Championship, a bare-knuckle MMA promotion that he founded last year. Thus far, the promotion has held four events, all of which have taken place in Biloxi, Mississippi.
The bare-knuckle element is inspired by Masvidal's past in underground street fighting. The promotion has seen a range of regional talent compete, including former Contender Series standout Brok Weaver and former NFL star Frank Gore.
It remains to be seen just how much this promotion can grow, but it has appeared to be successful thus far off the back of Masvidal's popularity. Interestingly, 'Gamebred' is also a partial owner of the iKON Fighting Championship, which is available to watch on UFC Fight Pass.
#3. Lousiana Style Hot Sauce - Dustin Poirer
Dustin Poirier's Louisiana Hot Sauce was a surprising venture that popped up before the fighter's second and third fights with Conor McGregor. There are now multiple different sauces available, all with differing levels of spice. Even McGregor gave the sauce a good review, although he changed his stance prior to the final fight the trilogy bout.
The product stands out as a unique project that pays homage to Poirier's routes as a Louisiana native. Proceeds from the item go to The Good Fight Foundation, which is aiming to provide 300,000 meals to families in need in southern Louisiana.
As for Poirier's career inside the octagon, he is currently without an opponent, having last fought Charles Oliveira in December of last year. Despite losing on that occasion, he remains one of the top lightweights on the planet. Fans have to wait and see what the future has in store for both Dustin Poirier and his hot sauce.
#2. Recuerdo Mezcal - Jorge Masvidal
Jorge Masvidal makes his second appearance on this list with his Mezcal company, Recuerdo Mezcal. Alcoholic beverage companies have proven to be a good option for UFC fighters that are branching out, and Recuerdo Mezcal appears to be no exception.
While Masvidal is not the first fighter to pursue a venture like this, his immense popularity makes him a good candidate to have success in this field. The company itself is based out of Oaxaca in southwest Mexico, but it first launched in the US in Florida, California and Texas.
The product has received a plethora of positive reviews, giving the sense that the company could have a big future. Although Masvidal would never admit this, it does seem as though this business move was inspired by the success of a rival fighter's alcoholic beverage company.
#1. Proper No. Twelve Irish Whiskey - Conor McGregor
Conor McGregor's Proper No. Twelve Irish Whiskey may be the most successful business ever owned by a UFC fighter. Last year, he and his partners sold their majority stake in the business to Proximo Spirits for a fee reported to be worth up to $600 million.
This is a testament to just how successful the business is that McGregor and his partners were able to create. The company is a natural fit for 'The Notorious', especially given his proud Irish heritage and the popularity of whiskey in the country. The business also donates heavily to first responders all over the world.
Conor McGregor is known for being one of the highest paid athletes in history, and in Proper No. Twelve, he found yet another way to add to his wealth. While he may no longer be a part of the majority ownership, McGregor is still clearly involved with the brand and can regularly be seen in their adverts.