By Ronnie Nathanielsz
As Filipino boxing hero Manny Pacquiao continues to earn huge sums of money from the guaranteed purse in his blockbuster fights in the ring plus television and ancillary rights income in the Philippines as well as pay-per-view add-ons and endorsements, Top Rank promoter Bob Arum is concerned over the handling of Pacquiao’s finances.
In an exclusive interview with BoxingScene.com. insidesports.ph, Standard Today and Viva Sports, Arum said “I am very, very concerned about it (handling of finances) “ in the aftermath of the projected income from the showdown with Ricky “The Hitman” Hatton last May 2 in Las Vegas and previous revenues generated in the huge fight against “The Golden Boy” Oscar De La Hoya last December 6.
Initial estimates indicate that Pacquiao would earn considerably more than the $12 million guarantee for his brutal second round knockout of Hatton. Arum told us that pay-per-view numbers did “extremely well.”
He estimated that PPV buys in the US alone would be “north of 900,000 and north of a million in Britain ” which would boost Pacquiao’s income. Solar Sports which telecast the fight over its own cable channel and GMA 7 as well as the famed Araneta Coliseum, theaters, school gymnasiums, restaurants, hotels and pubs nationwide reportedly paid Pacquiao $1.2 million for the Philippine rights not to mention the many endorsements the fighter earns from.
Arum said Pacquiao “is going to make a lot of extra money” with initial estimates pointing to gross revenues of some $23 million for Pacquiao which follows some $15 million from the De La Hoya fight.
Arum revealed that aside from promoting Pacquiao’s fights he is concerned about how he handles his money. He said he had “talked to” Secretary Lito Atienza and former governor Luis “Chavit” Singson about Pacquiao’s finances since “he is going to have a nice-sized cheque” for the Hatton fight.
Arum said “I’m not going to stick that money in his bank. I am going to sit down with him and Jinkee (Pacquiao’s wife) and guys like Lito (Atienza) and Chavit (Singson) whom I respect and make sure he puts it some place where he can’t get his hands on it.”
Pacquiao’s adviser Michael Koncz told BoxingScene.com, insidesports.ph, Standard Today and Viva Sports in a separate conversation from Los Angeles that “a little more progress” was being made on how Pacquiao’s finances are managed even as he stressed “we are doing our best.”
He said Pacquiao had three construction projects underway in the Philippines and recently bout a 4,500 square feet, 5-bedroom house in Hancock Park which borders Beverly Hills and is in “a good neighborhood.”
Koncz said Pacquiao got “a very good deal and it was much cheaper” than originally priced besides being “brand new.”
Pacquiao had earlier invested in a ten-door apartment complex in the less fashionable Melrose District commercial and residential community in the Hollywood District of Los Angeles.
Pacquiao’s wife Jinkee who handles her side of the finances with an eye on investments had a three storey building constructed in downtown General Santos City while they also operate a convenience store. In addition, they own a P35 million mansion in GenSan, a home in the BF Homes area in Paranaque and also a home in Brentville where their two sons go to school.
Pacquiao also bought the old, rundown L&M Gym in Manila where he used to train as a young fighter aspiring to become a world champion from original Team Pacquiao member and boxing man Lito Mondejar for some P8 million and is constructing a seven-storey building which will house a gym as well as dormitories for university belt students at very reasonable rates.
As part of his public service efforts, Pacquiao provided scholarships for some 200 poor but bright students in Sarangani province as well as medical clinics for the less fortunate and a gym in GenSan for promising young boxers.