Pacquiao now a ONE FC shareholder

Posted at 08/04/2014 1:19 PM | Updated as of 08/06/2014 3:07 PM
Manny Pacquiao

MANILA, Philippines -- Filipino boxing icon Manny Pacquiao is now a shareholder of mixed martial arts company ONE Fighting Championship (ONE FC), according to a Yahoo! Sports report.

ONE FC chief executive Victor Cui told Yahoo! Sports reporter Kevin Iole that Pacquiao purchased "an undisclosed number of shares" in the company.

"There are tons of reasons why I'm excited about this. Obviously, Manny Pacquiao is a global sports icon, and having him as part of our organization as a shareholder and promoting ONE FC and promoting the sport is huge for the sport in the region," Cui told Iole.

Cui revealed that Pacquiao even tried on a pair of MMA gloves, and was delighted to find out that they were lighter than boxing gloves.

"He said to me, 'Man, someone could get hurt with the power of my punches if I could wear these,'" Cui related.

The executive also described Pacquiao as a "relatively new MMA fan."

ONE FC's popularity has steadily risen in the Philippines, with local MMA fighters like Eduard Folayang and other members of Team Lakay seeing action in the promotion's fight cards.

Recently, former women's boxing champion Ana Julaton also made her ONE FC debut, while former UFC contender Brandon Vera, a Filipino-American, also recently signed a contract with ONE FC.