Floyd Mayweather Jr.: The 1851 Exclusive Interview
Floyd Mayweather Jr.: The 1851 Exclusive Interview

1851 sat down with the man behind The Money Team to learn more about his foray into franchising with Mayweather Boxing + Fitness.

Whether or not you follow boxing, you know the name Floyd Mayweather Jr. One of the most dominant athletes to ever compete in the ring, Mayweather has built his name, and ultimately brand, without entering into any licensing agreements throughout his career – until now.

Earlier this year, Mayweather Boxing + Fitness opened its flagship gym in Los Angeles. It’s the first business to ever have Mayweather’s name attached to it – a move, Mayweather says, was designed to ensure that he had full ownership of his brand in order to build businesses after he retired. But now that Mayweather Boxing + Fitness is officially up and running, it’s full steam ahead. The brand is offering franchising opportunities both domestically and internationally, and is actively looking for franchise owners.

To learn more about Mayweather’s foray into franchising, as well as Mayweather Boxing + Fitness’ plans for growth in the future, 1851 Franchise sat down with the man behind The Money Team for an exclusive interview.

What inspired you to open Mayweather Boxing + Fitness?

Boxing and fitness have been incredibly positive focuses throughout my entire life.  My dedication to these disciplines has allowed me to take care of my family, travel the world and enjoy many of the things that life has to offer.  Now that I’ve retired from the sport of boxing, I want to give back and share my knowledge of training and fitness with everyone, to help create that positive focus and provide a more effective way to train.  I saw what was happening in the fitness industry, with studio concepts growing rapidly and boxing group fitness becoming not only one of the hottest trends, but also one of the most effective workouts you can do – and I knew the time was right to create a fitness concept that is unique to everything I have learned and tailored to what consumers are demanding.

Mayweather Boxing + Fitness is the perfect place for people of any age, any skill level, and from any walk of life to get fit and feel good about themselves.  Everything is based on my own approach to training that I developed during my 21 years at the top of the sport of boxing. These are workouts that I’ve never shared before, and which I am now excited to roll out exclusively through the Mayweather Boxing + Fitness family.

Why do you feel that now is the right time to franchise the concept?

The fitness industry is evolving and continues to see a shift towards boutique group fitness with a focus on a particular sport or discipline.  As I mentioned before, boxing is one of the fastest growing segments within this category.  It’s also something that’s here to stay, because of the efficacy of the workout and the results that people achieve.  That means we’re hitting an attractive, fast-growing market under the banner of a brand that has global recognition as the gold standard in boxing. 

It is also the right time for me personally to focus my attention on rapidly scaling the business around the world and expanding the Mayweather brand into new and exciting platforms. 

Did you always have a plan for a business career after boxing?

I’ve had a long and established career as a professional boxer, but Mayweather Boxing + Fitness isn’t my first business.  Throughout my professional career, I’ve been a businessman, both through my own promotions company, as well as other successful businesses I’ve started and investments I’ve made.    The creation of Mayweather Boxing + Fitness is just the next step in the progression for me from athlete/ businessman to full-time business operator.

What has your career in boxing taught you about opening and running a successful business?

To become the best athlete in boxing, and to earn a billion dollars throughout that journey, I surrounded myself with smart people.  I worked with incredible people, both in and out of the ring - and I always knew that success in sport or in business comes from teamwork.  I’ve now spent five years building, developing and cultivating the best team in the industry, with expertise and proven track records in fitness franchising, celebrity-backed businesses, group fitness programming, technology, etc., and we have collectively created this platform to deliver a best-in-class experience at Mayweather Boxing + Fitness.  This has been showcased at our Los Angeles flagship location, which has an incredible and loyal member base.  This led to the studio becoming profitable just 90 days after opening its doors and 1,000 memberships being sold within the first 8 months of being open.  We had similar success with the announcement of the franchise business, and already have more than 20 studios in development across the US, with some exceptional franchisees. 

What can people learn about the sport of boxing that they can apply to being successful in their careers or as a business owner?

Boxing is all about strategy and discipline. You have to think many moves ahead of your opponent and be prepared for anything they will come at you with.  You have to be patient, disciplined, and execute the right punch or defensive movement at exactly the right time or it could cost you the fight.  But, you also have to be adaptable and responsive to be able change the game plan mid-fight—something I would do throughout my career.  You can’t plan out every detail of the fight because what you set out to use at the beginning of the fight, does not mean that this is the correct game plan as the fight progresses.

Adopting this approach in business can be highly effective. There are clear strategies that need to be implemented to grow a successful business, but we need to adapt to what is happening – to the market, to consumers, technology, people – all of these things require a business to continue to evolve and improve its strategy to ensure it stays ahead of the game in terms of what’s coming next.  In the same way I used that to my advantage in boxing, we’re doing the same thing with Mayweather Boxing + Fitness.

You have certainly had a lot of people in your camp – how do you determine someone’s character or if they are a good fit?

I am in the unique position to be able to choose almost anyone in the world to work with me, and I am very fortunate to be surrounded by people who share my passion for fitness combined with community.  To be part of my team you have to be real and you have to be loyal.  That’s just the way it’s always been.  Besides this, I’m looking for someone who is willing to put the work in.  “Hard Work.  Dedication” is one of our mantras; and that’s something I’ve lived by throughout my whole career.  I’m looking for this same mindset in any employee or person I bring into my team. They need the relentless determination and work ethic to do what it takes to make Mayweather Boxing + Fitness a global success.

How do you leverage your fame to attract franchisees? How do you think that will help Mayweather Boxing + Fitness grow?

I am lucky to have immediate access to over 42 million people through my social media—my Instagram has 21 million followers alone.  This provides me with the rare ability to speak directly to my fans, who are or will become Mayweather Boxing + Fitness members or franchisees.  A good example is the incredible response we received from franchise applicants immediately following my posts announcing our launch.  Potential franchisees see the power and the reach we have, and they understand how that can help turbocharge their own franchise locations. 

This helps us grow at the franchisor level, as we continue to attract top franchisees who understand the value of the Mayweather brand in fitness, and the awareness and recognition they will have from Day 1.  Perhaps more importantly, the ability for our franchisees to use my name, image and media helps them to differentiate and grow their businesses faster.  In practical terms, this would translate to things like lower member acquisition costs, fast member sign ups, meaningful retail and merchandising revenue streams, more impactful partnership opportunities and sponsorship dollars.

Why do you think that franchising is an industry that continues to attract athletes? And why should athletes consider franchising?

I think franchising is attractive to professional athletes because they are often looking to get into businesses which interest them, which they can relate to and which they can add value to.  Franchising lets them get into exciting, fun and lucrative businesses using a structured and proven business model, with an existing support system in place.  It can be a great option when they are sitting on large amounts of money to put that capital to work in something they understand and are comfortable with.  Athletes as franchisees can then leverage their name and fan base in their locations to grow their business even faster. 

What is attractive to you about franchising Mayweather Boxing + Fitness?

For me, Mayweather Boxing + Fitness is part of my legacy outside of the sport of boxing.  Just as I’ve built a successful athletic career, I’m now replicating this same success in creating a world-leading fitness platform.  It’s important to me to give back and provide a platform for as many people as possible to have access to great fitness facilities; for them to feel like a champion and to be a part of a global community.  As a member of Mayweather Boxing + Fitness, and for 45 minutes a day in class, you’ll feel this and be able to take it into your daily life.

It’s also grounded in the philosophy that everyone should have access to, and benefit from, top fitness resources. Through our flexible business model, Mayweather Boxing + Fitness will be in neighborhoods all over the world – including communities which don’t traditionally offer boutique group fitness facilities.  We’re creating a global movement for people to train better, feel better and – most importantly – become connected in a meaningful way to a positive global community.