Former Golden Boy CEO Richard Schaefer said he's "looking forward to new challenges." (Jeff Bottari/Getty Images)
Golden Boy Promotions CEO Richard Schaefer announced on Monday that he was stepping down from his position and leaving the company. Schaefer's departure follows months of speculation about a rift between Schaefer and Golden Boy president Oscar De La Hoya.
"After more than ten years with Golden Boy, it is time to move on to the next chapter of my career," Schaefer said. "This decision has required a great deal of personal reflection, but ultimately I concluded that I have no choice but to leave. I have succeeded in banking and I have succeeded in boxing, and I look forward to the next opportunity. I am proud to remain a shareholder, so I have a strong interest in the continued success of the company. I am proud of what we have accomplished at Golden Boy, but I now look forward to new challenges."
A former Swiss banker, Schaefer befriended De La Hoya in the mid-1990s. The two grew closer in the late 90's, when Schaefer assisted De La Hoya with some of his money problems. In 2000, Schaefer resigned from his position at UBS and began taking an active role in De La Hoya's career. In 2001, De La Hoya split from Top Rank and, with Schaefer, purchased Roy Engelbrech Promotions and rebranded it Golden Boy Promotions. With De La Hoya's star power and Schaefer's business savvy, Golden Boy quickly became one of boxing's biggest promotional companies.
Recently, the relationship between De La Hoya and Schaefer has become strained. Schaefer has grown closer with Al Haymon, the shadowy advisor who represents many of the top talents in boxing. Many of Haymon's fighters who fight for Golden Boy do not have a formal contract with the company, which is an issue De La Hoya acknowledged at a press conference earlier this month. While it remains unclear when Schaefer will be free to pursue other opportunities—in many of these situations there is a non-compete clause—an eventual reunion with Haymon seems likely.
Without Schaefer, De La Hoya takes on a bigger burden for next month's pay per view between the company's biggest star, Saul Alvarez, and Erislandy Lara. While De La Hoya has been the face of the company since its inception, Schaefer has handled the day-to-day responsibilities of promoting events.