The WBC boxing world title belt is arguably the most iconic in the world.
The World Boxing Council (WBC) was established in 1963 and, since then, owning a WBC belt has been the primary goal of many professional boxers. When champions are interviewed, they often talk about their childhood dreams of being awarded a WBC belt. There have been over 2000 WBC World Championship fights since the 1960s.
The first ever WBC belt
Originally, WBC champions were awarded trophies in the shape of a globe, but during the 1960s, the first belt was awarded. It was a black leather or satin belt with a silver medallion, with the weight division written on it.
WBC belts 1970s-1980s
During the 1970s, Adidas sponsored the first ever green and gold belt which was used for a few years. Towards the end of the 1970s, the WBC belt was developed to feature a green leather gold centre medallion. In the centre medallion, countries of the world that were affiliated to the WBC and the boxer figure logo were pictured, surrounded by the founder country’s flags.
The 1970s saw the introduction of the WBC side panel which initially had the Adidas logo on it. But in the the 1980s, the 3rd generation of belts with golden side panels were introduced, with the emergence of the great Joe Louis and Muhammad Ali.
WBC Belts 1980s-1990s
The Champions of the 1980s and 1990s won the Gold Plated WBC medallion, supported by side panels of Muhammad Ali, Lennox Lewis and some of the greatest Champions of all time. You can view and buy an exact replica of the WBC Official Gold plated Replica World Championship belt on our website.
WBC belts of the 21st Century
The larger WBC belt can into existence in the year 2000 and since then there has only been one further change. This was in part to deter counterfeiters, but during every decade there seems to be an adaption.
Since 2000 there have generally been 4 side panels ( 2 on each side) and occasionally in recent years 3 on each side, such as the Muhammad Ali and Jose Sulaiman belts. Jose Sulaiman has been the architect of all designs for the WBC belts since the 1960s and the longest reigning President of a sporting organisation in the history of sport.
The WBC belts are currently hand made by Cleto Reyes with Ferrari Leather and the medallions are made by artists and jewellers. The side panels are made by respected designer Mauricio Alain Flores of Mexico.
A few years ago, there was a public vote on who should be on the side panels. They put 2 of the greatest fighters in every division on each belt.
For example, on the WBC super middleweight Championship of the World belt, there would have traditionally been Ali Lois then the Champ and Challenger. However, instead there is Nigel Benn and Joe Calzaghe, who was then the current Champion Challenger on the belt.
The rear of the belt has traditionally always been signed by the President and even now the Jose Sulaiman autograph is printed on the belt alongside current President Mauricio Sulaiman. Since 2000, the weight division has also been written on the rear.
The Green Championship WBC Belt
The WBC’s green championship belt portrays the flags of all of the 161 member countries of the organisation. All WBC world-title belts look identical regardless of weight class; however, there are minor variations on the design for secondary and regionally themed titles within the same weight class.
The WBC Diamond Championship Belt
In 2009, the WBC created its new “Diamond Championship” belt. The belt was originally created as an honorary championship exclusively to award the winner of a historic fight between two high-profile and elite boxers. The Diamond Belt was awarded in November 2009 to Manny Pacquiao, who won his sixth world title (in 5 different divisions) via a 12th-round technical knockout (TKO) over Miguel Cotto at welterweight fight in Las Vegas.
Other holders of this title have included Callum Smith (super middleweight), Bernard Hopkins (light heavyweight), Sergio Martínez and Saúl Álvarez (middleweight), Floyd Mayweather, Jr. (super welterweight), Nonito Donaire (super bantamweight), Léo Santa Cruz (featherweight), Jean Pascal, Sergey Kovalev (light heavyweight), Mikey Garcia (super lightweight) and Jorge Linares (lightweight). The title can be defended, but it is not a mandatory requirement. The title can also be vacated due to a fighter’s long-term absence or retirement from boxing.
The Silver Championship WBC Belt
The “Silver” world title belt was created in 2010. Justin Savi was the first to win it on 16 April 2010. A boxer holding the Silver title cannot inherit the full title vacated by the champion. The WBC recognises Interim and Silver champions, as well as Interim Silver champions.
The Eternal Championship WBC Belt
The WBC Eternal Championship is an honorary title. It is awarded to dominant champions that have never lost a world title, and retired undefeated while having a solid number of successful title defenses.
Jiselle Salandy was awarded the Eternal title for defending the WBC female super welterweight title five times before she died in January 2009. On December 12, 2016, Vitali Klitschko was recognized as “Eternal Champion”, due to having ten successful WBC heavyweight title defenses during his career before retirement in 2013 – he has never been knocked down during his career.
The Emerald WBC Belt, Mayweather vs. Pacquiao, 2015
A few years ago in Las Vegas, Mauricio Sulaiman, president of the WBC, presented a special emerald belt for the historic fight between Floyd Mayweather and Manny Pacquiao. The iconic belt is studded with 3,017 emeralds, making it worth more than $1 million. The belt was voted for by boxing fans, with 53% of the fans voting for the emerald belt against 47% voting on the Onyx belt.
Money Belt for Mayweather vs. McGregor
At the final press conference for the Floyd Mayweather vs. Conor McGregor boxing match, “The Money Belt” was unveiled. The belt is said to feature 3,360 diamonds, 600 sapphires, 300 emeralds and 1.5 kilograms of solid, 24-karat gold.
It was made with alligator leather imported from Italy and is purposely uneven on the sides to “preserve the style of the alligator.” WBC President Sulaiman has not revealed how much the belt is worth, simply stating that “It cost many, many, many hours of work of many artisans. It is just a beautiful piece of work”.
All the intricate art detail on the belt is hand painted, section by section, colour by colour, and it takes more than a month to produce one. However, multiple belts are worked on at the same time, rather than finishing one before another.
The future of WBC belts
There is a big fight coming up soon between Saul “Canelo” Alvarez and Gennady Golovkin. The Canelo vs. GGG fight will take place on the 15th of September and will be a rematch for the Golovkin’s WBC middleweight title. A unique belt will be presented to the winner of this next big super fight.
The GGG Canelo WBC belt
This new custom-made WBC belt has been made from age-old fossil. This pure fossilised amber is said to date back to between 25-40 million years ago, and is significant because it was made in honour of the Mexican Independence Day, which takes place a day after the fight.
It’s been named the WBC “Adolfo López Mateos” belt and it was created by artisans who wanted to capture the pre-Hispanic technique of the Chiapanec loom. There are various shades of white cotton, which were chosen to symbolise the armour of the ancient Mayan warriors.
The belt is decorated with a network of rings representing the union and fidelity of the 12 Mayan towns of the state. There is also a plaque which represents the legend “Majbanéj-Maya” – translating as “Mayan Warrior.”
“All Mexicans must be very excited to be represented in the world by boxers, art and companies of this level. This will be a great celebration,” said World Boxing Council President Mauricio Sulaiman.
WBC replica belts which are sold to fans are identical to the official title belts. You can view all WBC contest belt replicas on our website and show your support for WBC champions.