Hall of fame | 

Former chief of Daniel Kinahan's MTK Global to be awarded top boxing honour

As President and CEO Yalen oversaw the management of 300 boxers including champions Josh Taylor and Tyson Fury
Neil Fetherstonhaugh

Bob Yalen, the former chief of MTK Global which was set up by Daniel Kinahan, has been inducted into the International Boxing Hall of Fame.

The IBHOF, which is based in New York, honours boxers, trainers and other contributors to the sport worldwide.

Inductees, who are selected by members of the Boxing Writers Association of America, have included such greats as Muhammad Ali.

Now, Yalen, who served as MTK’s President and CEO since 2018, before he resigned from the position following the US Government’s veto to impose sanction on the Kinahan cartel, is to be inducted alongside others in a ceremony in June.

Last month Yalen (inset) announced that he had resigned from MTK Global

Last month Yalen (inset) announced that he had resigned from MTK Global

“Bob Yalen can now add Hall of Fame to his resume which includes 6 sports Emmy awards, associate editor of the Ring Record Book, boxing producer at ABC and NBC and president/CEO of MTK Global,” it states on its website.

“Yalen (who) developed an interest in boxing at a young age and while still in high school began researching fight records and created the newsletter This Month At Ringside,” his citation reads.

After detailing his interest and involvement in the sport, it adds: “In 2018 he joined MTK Global and was appointed President and CEO, overseeing the management of 300 boxers including champions Josh Taylor and Tyson Fury.”

Last month Yalen announced he was stepping down from his role due to “personal reasons.”

Yalen resigned from the position following the “pressure of the last few weeks” after the company’s co-founder, Kinahan, was sanctioned by the US Government.

Reps for MTK announced Yalen’s departure in a statement, writing: “We regret to announce that Bob Yalen has today stepped down as CEO of MTK Global for personal reasons.

“We would like to thank him for all of his efforts on behalf of the business and his leadership of our team.”

Yalen, who has no involvement in crime, added: “I am incredibly proud of the success of MTK Global and I feel privileged to have served as President and CEO since 2018.

“However, the pressure of the last few weeks has been particularly intense. I need to consider the impact on myself and my family. So after four years leading MTK, I think it’s time for me to step aside to take on new challenges.”

Yalen's resignation followed the unprecedented move by US authorities to hit MTK founder Kinahan with worldwide financial sanctions alongside his father Christopher Snr and brother Christopher Jnr.

The US Department of Treasury’s Office of Foreign Assets Control issued a $5million bounty for information leading to the arrest or conviction of the three most senior members of the cartel group for smuggling narcotics to Europe, laundering money, and committing murders as part of its criminal enterprise.

A day after Yalen resigned, MTK Global announced it had taken the difficult decision to cease operations due to “unprecedented levels of unfair scrutiny and criticism”.

The statement from MTK reads: “As a business we have faced unprecedented levels of unfair scrutiny and criticism since the sanctioning by the US government of Daniel Joseph Kinahan."

“It is a matter of public record that Mr Kinahan’s involvement in MTK ceased in 2017, and despite repeated reassurances in this regard, unfounded allegations about his ongoing association with us and our fighters persist.

“Since leading promoters have now informed us that they will be severing all ties to MTK and will no longer work with our fighters, we've taken the difficult decision to cease operations at the end of this month.

“MTK prospered because we always put the long term interests of our fighters at the heart of what we do.”

It adds: “Our priority in the weeks ahead will be to ensure that our world class boxers are supported to find new partnerships as swiftly as possible.

“Thank you to all the fans who have supported us over the last decade."

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