Africa fintech unicorn and leading payments company, Flutterwave has partnered with Afrosport TV on the sponsorship of the Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON) 2021 broadcast, this is to ensure that millions of Africans have unrestricted access to watch AFCON 2021 on free-to-air TVs in Africa.
AfroSport TV is sub-Sahara Africa’s first 24-hour free continent-wide sports channel with the exclusive right to broadcast the 2021 African Cup of Nation on Free TV and on Digital Terrestrial Television in Nigeria and across Africa.
Confirming the sponsorship deal, the Co-Founder of Flutterwave, Olugbenga Agboola through the company’s blog said, “uniting Africa via sports is just as important as the work we do in uniting Africa via payments and commerce. This is why we are partnering with Africa’s first continental Free To Air (FTA) sports channel, Afrosport TV, to ensure that millions of fans are able to enjoy AFCON 2021 in their homes for free.
“We like to think of ourselves as an Africa-first global company, so it’s important that we invest in African technology, entertainment, and now sports. With our coverage of Africa on Flutterwave for Business, Send, and Barter, it’s fair to say that for AFCON 2021, we’re ‘Africa’s National Team’.”
AFCON 2021 kicks off on Sunday, 9th of January 2022, it has been tagged as the biggest continental football extravaganza and with sponsorship from Flutterwaves and other partners. It’s been reported that all AFCON 52 matches will be transmitted on a tripod of Free-to-air TV networks like the NTA Network Service; selected Broadcasting Organization of Nigeria’s (BON) TV Stations and Afrosport TV Channel 730 on the National Broadcasting Commission’s (NBC) digital platform – Free TV.
Talking about the sponsorship, Mr. Olugbenga Agboola said, “The idea of making quality sports content available and accessible to every Nigerian and the rest of the continent for free resonates with the idea of making life easy, which is the one thing Flutterwave was established for.
“What we are all about at Flutterwave is making life easy and that is why we have provided the easiest and most reliable payments solutions for businesses anywhere in the world. If getting free access to sports, which represents our passion as Africans and fosters our unity is what makes life easy, we will surely be standing tall”.
The Co-Founder of Afrosport TV, Mr. Andy Howes said “Flutterwave is seeking to be an enabler at the heart of African commerce and community life, and their support as a Broadcast Sponsor is further evidence of the genuineness of their commitment. Sponsorship is the life-blood of FTA TV, and it is only by the support of companies such as Flutterwave that millions of fans are able to participate in the enjoyment of an event like the African Nations Cup through their TV sets”.
Jake Paul Acquires Stake in UFC Parent Company, Endeavour Group Holdings
Jake Paul, a Youtuber turned boxer, on Tuesday announced he has purchased a stake in Endeavour Group Holdings, the parent company of Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) to protest the poor pay structure of fighters, among other things.
Paul, a long-time advocate of better pay and treatment of fighters, had called on Dana White, the President of UFC to increase athletes’ pay and give them good health care policy given the level of risk they take.
Jake Paul, 24, said he partnered Geoffrey Woo in his investment and called on other wealthy individuals, hedge funds, etc to join him in order to force UFC to make changes to its pay structure.
He tweeted, ‘I’ve invested in EDR (UFC) stock with my partner @geoffreywoo 2 focus on UFCs ESG standards relating to fighters’.
‘We believe EDR can drive long-term economic value by increasing UFC fighter pay & providing them healthcare.
‘Reaching out to @EngineNo_1 to partner on this ‘endeavour.”
The move was after Francis Ngannou, a Cameroonian UFC fighter and the heavyweight champion of the world, disclosed that he received $600,000 per fight as a champion despite the level of risk involved while the likes of Tyson Fury, Anthony Joshua and other boxers get paid $30 million and even more in case of Anthony Joshua.
Ngannou has since refused to extend his contract except certain adjustments are made to allow him the freedom to cross over to boxing.
Jake Paul, a new boxer with just three fights in 2021, earned $40 million, according to Forbes’s latest athletes’ earning report.
‘My partner Jake has lead the way in changing the business of combat sports by not just talking about it, but being about it — fighter pay, healthcare, & championing women’s sport,’ Woo said.
‘And today is our next step in our vision of revolutionizing the industry.
‘UFC has faced a rising chorus of criticism for the exploitation of its athletes — the [love] of [the] biz.
‘The ratio of revenue going to athletes vs. owners & leagues is well below industry standard.
‘This disparity hurts long-term shareholder value & this is not going to magically change.
‘Jake is the archetype of the future, where individual transcends the machine.
‘This is happening across all sectors — media, entertainment, & tech start-ups where dynamic, innovative individuals & creators are bargaining toe-to-toe w the owners, the institutions, and the academy.
‘We believe the best way to accelerate this inevitable revolution is to lead it from within the UFC as co-owners & impact investors.
‘We will use our investment stake to rally fans, athletes, fellow shareholders, and management to do the right thing.’
Francis Ngannou Defeats Ciryl Gane, Displays Unique Wrestling Skill
Cameroonian UFC Heavyweight Champion of the World, Francis Ngannou, defeated Ciryl Gane to retain his belt with shocking wrestling and grappling skills no one saw coming leading up to the fight.
When the UFC 270 main event between heavyweight champion Francis Ngannou and interim champ Ciryl Gane was made official, it’s unlikely anyone expected an Ngannou win to come on the strength of his wrestling and jiu-jitsu. That’s exactly how the fight played out on Saturday night, however, with Ngannou surviving some rough early rounds before leaning on an unlikely combination of takedowns and ground control to pull away and take a unanimous decision victory inside the Honda Center in Anaheim, California.
Gane came out wanting to grapple with Ngannou, pushing forward and ending up in a clinch, though Ngannou was able to easily fight off the takedown attempt. From there, the expected striking battle broke out, with Gane using his slick footwork to try to move around the Octagon and pick angles and Ngannou looking for his trademark bombs.
The problem for Ngannou was actually finding Gane to land those shots. The grappling early appeared to drain Ngannou’s gas tank and he then was forced to chase Gane around the Octagon, with Gane casually moving, turning sideways and touching Ngannou with a variety of strikes as he built up a lead through cleaner work in the opening rounds.
In the third round, Ngannou finally had a moment, catching a Gane high kick and turning it into a massive body slam to end up on top in side control. Gane was able to escape back to his feet, only taking a few punches when he gave up his back to get back to standing only for Ngannou to again briefly take the fight to the ground. Shockingly, Ngannou scored with another takedown late in the round.
Having seen an unexpected side of Ngannou’s game, Gane looked to maintain distance with a steady diet of kicks in the fourth round, but Ngannou managed another takedown when he was able to close the distance and grab a body lock. Gane fought back to his feet only to be taken down yet again, keeping the fight on the ground for the remainder of the round.
With the fight seemingly tied up at two rounds apiece after Ngannou’s grappling had turned the tide, the fifth round seemed to be where the fight would ultimately be decided. After some early striking from Gane, he stepped inside and scored his own takedown, putting Ngannou on his back. Gane then made a pivotal mistake, abandoning the position in search of a leg lock.
Ngannou survived the leg lock to end up in top position, battling to improve his position while not doing much damage with strikes before the final horn.
The decision to go for the leg lock did prove to be Gane’s undoing, as the official scorecards read 48-47, 48-47, 49-46, all for Ngannou.
“I knew that he was going to be a tough opponent, no doubt,” Ngannou said after the fight. “I was surprised that he held on to the end of the fight but he was very good. The only thing that I had to do, that my coach reminded me all the time, was stay composed. Trust yourself, don’t chase him.”
Ngannou also confirmed rumors of a pre-fight knee injury while discussing the build to the fight.
“I hurt my knee, tore my MCL completely and hurt my ACL,” Ngannou said. “I wanted to pull out of this fight but couldn’t see myself retreating from this fight because it was a chance to make a statement and remind everyone that I’m the champ.”
CBS Sports was with you the entire way on Saturday bringing you all the results and highlights from the UFC 270 below.
UFC 270 card and results
- Francis Ngannou (c) def. Ciryl Gane via unanimous decision (48-47, 48-47, 49-46)
- Deiveson Figueiredo def. Brandon Moreno (c) via unanimous decision (48-47, 48-47, 48-47)
- Michel Pereira def. Andre Fialho via unanimous decision (29-28, 29-28, 29-28)
- Said Nurmagomedov def. Cody Stamann via first-round submission (guillotine choke)
- Michael Morales def. Trevin Giles via first-round TKO (punches)
- Victory Henry def. Raoni Barcelos via unanimous decision (30-27, 30-27, 30-27)
- Jack Della def. Pete Rodriguez via first-round TKO (punches)
Binance Deepens Crypto Adoption in Africa, Sponsors 2021 Africa Cup of Nations
Binance the largest cryptocurrency exchange platform has further deepened its nest into the African community by becoming an official sponsor of the continent’s biggest football competition, the 2021 Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON).
Binance made this announcement on the company’s official website on Monday. This sponsorship deal makes Binance the exclusive cryptocurrency and blockchain platform for the 2021 AFCON tournament.
The company said, “this sponsorship deal will make Binance the exclusive cryptocurrency and blockchain platform for the AFCON 2021 tournaments as we take our global brand and technology to African football.”
The TotalEnergies Africa Cup of Nations tournament starts the sports calendar of the year for Africa. The 2021 AFCON tournament commenced on the 9th of January to end 6th of February 2022. The host country, Cameroon led the first match of the game and also won against their counterpart Burkina Faso at the Olembe Stadium in Yaounde, Cameroon.
Speaking on Binance sponsorship, Veron Mosengo-Omba, CAF’s General Secretary said, “I am delighted to welcome Binance as an official sponsor of the AFCON tournament this year. Through this partnership with CAF, Binance will connect further with its users and the African community through football. CAF is ready to embrace blockchain-based technology and its impact on the future of African football development. I am certain that together with Binance, we can take African football to a new level.”
Emmanuel Babalola, Binance Director for Africa said; “Football is the most popular sport in Africa, one that unites the entire continent and as the leading blockchain ecosystem, we are proud to be an official sponsor of the AFCON tournament. This corroborates our mission to take crypto mainstream across the continent.”
Binance explained that its mission as a company is “to drive blockchain adoption and enable greater access to financial services for the world’s unbanked”. The company also affirmed that it has provided free crypto education classes to over 541,000 Africans since 2020.
Yi He, co-founder, and CMO of Binance said; “With a population of 1.2 billion Africans and the prevalence of blockchain technology & its use cases, we believe the African continent could lead the future of the blockchain industry. We will continue to put in our efforts in pushing the mainstream adoption of crypto so that more people can understand crypto, and understand Binance.”
Binance announced that the company “will also be the official partner of the Assist of the Day / Binance Assist of the Week / Binance Assist of the Tournament, which will be promoted across CAF’s social media channels and across all six venues in five cities in Cameroon.”
Last week, the fintech Unicorn Flutterwave announced its partnership with Afrospot TV to sponsor AFCON 2021 on Free-to-air TVs across Africa, to ensure that millions of Africans have unrestricted access to watch the tournament.
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