Aram Davtyan: Mohammed Ali made boxing a business, our business is to continue

In the world of amateur and professional sports, Aram Davtyan is known from different sides. Someone speaks of him as the organizer of boxing fights from Punch Boxing Promotions. Others follow his A3 Retail Group and the development of Nike's flagship store in Kuznetsky, the Stride Running Store, the Vans skate store, and more. There are also those who know him through running, cycling and Aram's personal transformation through amateur sports.

It remains for us to add that he is an innovator, a businessman who is not afraid to set the highest standards and goals, while this while remaining true to yourself and your ideals. This year, another project of Aram Davtyan appeared in Moscow - the boxing studio “The Corner” , which is located not far from the gastronomic project Depo Moscow. On the occasion of the club's opening, we met with Aram in order to talk with him about business in the sports niche, ambitions and bringing a potentially new project to the market. Read about this and much more.

Aram Davtyan: Mohammed Ali made boxing a business, our business is to continue

Photo: Valeria Barinova, Championship

- How did sport appear in your life?

- It has always been in my life. Since childhood I have been fond of running. You know, even in high school, when it was difficult for everyone to wake up before school, I got up and went for a run. Perhaps part of this was due to my neighbor. He was very athletic and motivated me all the time.

- How difficult was it to drag the love of sports into adulthood? After all, it takes a lot of time to practice regularly.

- Probably, it was a little easier until the collapse of the USSR. Then, in the 90s, people were busy making money for bread, there was no time for that. I was no exception. And at some point, I found that my weight had already exceeded 100 kilograms, and I began to wear suits of size 58. Of course, health problems began to arise.

- How did your transformation begin?

- I then decided for myself that the moment had come where I would be saved only sports, went for a run and realized that running 500 meters with my weight became a problem. Everything that happened next became a real challenge. I decided to run around the park every morning, start at 100 meters. And every day, slowly add in the distance.

Then, according to an advertisement in the newspaper, I found the nearest fitness club and went there. There I met my coach Evgeny Bogdanov. He is a very disciplined person and I asked him to help me. He just came and said: Do you see me? I don’t want to look like that and I’m ready to do whatever you say. He prescribed me regular sports and scheduled meals. I lived like this for a couple of years, and from 106 I lost weight to 74 kg. Cycling has always been a plus to all the loads.

Aram Davtyan: Mohammed Ali made boxing a business, our business is to continue

Photo: Valeria Barinova, Championship

- What about boxing?

- Boxing has always existed somewhere in parallel. I never interest themBut you know, there is a sport that has been in my life, and there is one that has always been in my heart. So boxing has been in my heart since childhood. Returning to him as an adult, I decided to start promoting professional boxing. My global goal was to change the attitude towards professional sports in our country. Then I thought about why not open a boxing club where you can grow real champions.

- What was the impetus for the implementation of the idea?

- С I lived with this thought for a very long time, until I met people who, with their charisma and energy, brought great changes into my life. I got an understanding of the concept of a boxing club. I was supported by my English partners and my friend Stas Pisigin, and we decided to set ourselves the task of making a network. That is, “The Corner” . Now this is one club, but I really hope this is not a local story. The club we are in is exemplary, we have invested a lot of money and effort in it in the hope that it will become a flagship and a pioneer in brand promotion around the world.

Aram Davtyan: Mohammed Ali made boxing a business, our business is to continue

Photo: Valeria Barinova, Championship

- Which country experience did you take as a sample?

- It's hard to say, we have our own style, and there was no purpose to imitate someone. In preparation for the opening of "The Corner" we discussed and studied a lot of boxing clubs of the planet and their experience. American clubs are often exemplary history, but we are a few steps ahead here. And this is not because we are so cool, but because they have a completely different concept. There, boxing clubs are simple and not pretentious. The halls themselves are very cramped, they can be located on the basement floors. Imagine, in a boxing club there may not be a locker room and everyone will change clothes right in the gym. This approach is not bad, it's just different.

We wanted to make changes to this segment and say that boxing is not only a sport, but boxing clubs can be comfortable and accessible for everyone. It doesn't matter who you are: a girl or a guy, a pro or a beginner, black or white. If you love boxing, then you can come here and work out. Boxing is able to unite us all in one place, to become the nucleus for a whole community. After training, we can sit together, have a beer, chat, discuss TV fights. Can you write about beer? ( Laughs .)

Thinking that you can get much more out of boxing and give people a lot more, we got down to business. We are not saying that we will make a professional boxer out of a person, although we can do it. We talk about our concept of sex, boxing and rock and roll. It's about the atmosphere.

- Can you say that you brought the European aesthetics?

- I wouldn't say that. Have you seen boxing clubs in Europe? They are not bad, but different. Boring, one might say. Our goal is to create something new here in Moscow, and from here to export all over the world.

- Thatis this a new product?

- I would say that this is a new product, approach and vision.

Aram Davtyan: Mohammed Ali made boxing a business, our business is to continue

Photo: Valeria Barinova, Championship

- How has boxing evolved since the 20s of the XIX century?

- I think that not so much the sport itself has evolved as people. As for boxing, it remains one of the most sought-after sports. But now it is also developing into a new direction - boxing fitness. Now everyone can practice boxing with a trainer or in a group, regardless of preparation, and develop themselves physically and mentally, learn to think. After all, boxing is primarily a tactic, how your brain works.

- Is it possible to pump some psychological aspects in training?

- Tyson also said that he won the fight before entering the ring. This is a whole art. The science of defense, attack, thinking. You will not have an extra minute to make a decision in the ring. This must be worked out in advance. Through sweat and tears. By the way, about this ( laughs ) - on Fridays we will have an hour and a half trainings called Boxing, Sweat and Tears.

- Boxing for you - what is it about?

- Of course, about respect. And this is taught not only by boxing, but also by any other sport. I have rarely seen two opponents when they openly fight each other, hate each other and outside the ring. In 99% of cases, this is a fair fight, and it is for this that the parties begin to respect each other. It's still a sport, a competition, not a fight on the street.

Aram Davtyan: Mohammed Ali made boxing a business, our business is to continue

Photo: Valeria Barinova, Championship

- Who are your cult figures in boxing?

- If we talk about what the boxer did in the ring, then this is, of course, Mike Tyson . From the point of view of competent boxing, technique, tactics - Floyd Mayweather Jr. . He is incredibly cunning and in most cases just leaves his rivals in the cold.

And if you look from the side of his contribution to boxing, as to the sport in general, this is Mohammed Ali . He, perhaps, was the first to make a business out of boxing, our business is now continuing (smiles). Of course, this has been the case before: the battles for which people have placed bets won money. But it was with the arrival of Mohammed Ali that the real intrigue appeared. He knew how to stir up the fight, how to make the audience yearn for the meeting between the two fighters.

- Can you remember the fight that kept you on your toes from start to finish?

- I was very worried during the fight when Kostya Tszyu and Zab Judah fought. They even competed with a friend who would better portray Kostya Tszyu's knockout and the opponent's fall ( laughs ). My friend is a real professional in this, he did very well.

Aram Davtyan: Mohammed Ali made boxing a business, our business is to continue

Photo: Valeria Barinova, Championship

- What is the main message of your project? Have you realized your dream by making boxing a part of your life?

- Partly merealized my dream. But we cannot stop there. The dream needs to be turned into something more. Now I want it to be a real profitable business that could give people everything they want. Until I am recognizable and known in every part of the globe, I cannot say that I have fully realized my dream.

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