World Boxing Union
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The World Boxing Union (WBU) is a boxing sanctioning body. The original WBU was founded in January 1995 by IBF European representative Jon W Robinson. It sanctioned boxing with various promoters worldwide
The WBU had a "golden" period between 1996-2006 when its title contests were often shown live on satellite and terrestrial television. The WBU title during this time could be compared with the early days of the WBO.
Until recently it was fully recognised by the British Boxing Board of Control (BBBofC) as a legitimate sanctioning body. WBU titles were particularly well recognised in Europe and Africa. WBU titles have been held by the likes of Ricky Hatton, George Foreman, Thomas Hearns, Baby Jake Matlala, James Toney, Johnny Nelson, Micky Ward and Danny McDermott.
After the death of WBU founder and President Jon W Robinson in 2004, the organisation honoured outstanding contractual fights and sanctioned various contests. The sanctioning body has now been reestablished in the USA after several years of being dormant. On 30 January 2005 the WBU was welcomed back in its birthplace in a WBU International title fight in which George "HitHard" Hillyard captured the crown.
After 2004 a new WBU was founded in Germany, with heavyweights Gene Pukall, Andreas Sidon, Mark de Mori, Ratko Draskovic and Zhang Junlong (interim titleholder) having held a version of this title.
List of WBU heavyweight champions
|Name||Duration of reign||Defenses||Notes|
|George Foreman||March 29, 1995 – 1997||2||Foreman was recognized as champion after he was stripped of the IBF title|
|Corrie Sanders||November 15, 1997 – May 20, 2000||3||Defeated Ross Purity|
|Hasim Rahman||May 20, 2000 – April 21, 2001||0||Relinquished the title in order to fight Lennox Lewis for the IBF, IBO and WBC titles|
|Johnny Nelson||November 24, 2001 – December 4, 2001||0||Defeated Alexander Vasiliev. Relinquished the title in order to concentrate on defending his WBO Cruiserweight title|
|Georgi Kandelaki||December 21, 2002 – January 2004||0||Defeated Alexander Vasiliev. Kandelaki either relinquished or was stripped of the title|
|Matt Skelton||February 25, 2005 – January 26, 2009||0||Skelton relinquished the title|