Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) fighter Luana Pinheiro has announced that she has partnered with Bitwage to receive her salary in Bitcoin (BTC). Pinheiro said that it still receives paper payments from its sponsors but that it converts it to BTC immediately through Bitwage.
Pinheiro is currently ranked 15th in the UFC division and has won eight fights in a row. The fighter said she chose to receive her salary in bitcoin after her friend and fellow mixed martial artist Matthews Nikolaou encouraged her.
Comparing Bitcoin to its fighting style, jiu-jitsu, Pinheiro highlighted that she prefers getting paid with BTC and doesn’t care about the volatility of the cryptocurrency. According to her, volatility is the main factor that drives asset appreciation.
“If it wasn’t volatile, it wouldn’t go up either,” she said, explaining:
“Think about it: It takes an average of 10-15 years per person to get a black belt in Brazil in Jiu Jitsu, so my favorite time here is the same length, if not longer. Everything else is just noise to me and the lower the price The more bitcoins you can secure for the future.”
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The Brazilian also revealed that Bitcoin, for her, acts as a hedge against inflation since the purchasing power of fiat currencies has deteriorated over the years with inflation while BTC, despite its corrective moves, has continued an upward trend.
“Don’t forget I’m from Brazil, so I know a thing or two about inflation and its effects. I was born around 1994, around the time the Brazilian currency Real was introduced and pegged 1:1 to the US dollar at the time. It’s now 5 Brazilian Real for $1 American She said that Bitcoin is for it, to protect against inflation.
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In addition to Nicolau and Pinheiro, professional soccer players Alex Barrett, Achara Ifunanyachi and Alex Crognale receive their income from Bitcoin.
The UFC has established several partnerships with crypto companies. In April, the UFC joined crypto exchange Crypto.com, enabling fighters to receive fan rewards in BTC. Fan rewards are paid out by Crypto.com to the top three fighters in upcoming pay-per-view events.
Separately, in June, the UFC entered into a multi-year marketing partnership with blockchain logistics company VeChain Foundation, worth $100 million.