While a lot of the online wrestling community has remained critical of the WWE in recent years, and the television ratings have dropped significantly since the Monday Night Wars, revenue is up. This is based on a report by business publication Bloomberg, who spoke to Stephanie McMahon about the current direction of the company. According to the site, the share price for WWE stock finished near an all-time high of $33.84. The WWE also brought in $801 million in revenue and a $50.6 million net income in 2017, the largest profit the company ever made. With that said, the WWE is hotter than ever, and McMahon said that her family was not against the idea of selling the company.
Stephanie McMahon On Selling The WWE
As Bloomberg noted, there have been a lot of interest in the WWE in recent years. Companies that have reported interest in buying the WWE include Walt Disney, Fox, Comcast, AT&T, and Verizon. The most significant rumor surrounded Fox, who also tried to purchase the UFC before losing in the bidding war.
With Fox selling its movie studio to Disney, the company might be looking at bringing in new year-round entertainment for its networks, whether that is Fox, FS1 or other networks. CBS Sports reported that the WWE would see its deal with NBC Universal come to an end on Sept. 30, 2019. This means that the WWE can find a new television partner to replace the USA Network, or possibly even sell the company to a significant network conglomerate.
When asked about the possibility of selling the WWE, Stephanie McMahon said that her family has considered the idea. As a matter of fact, McMahon said that they would be foolish not to take the idea of selling the company into consideration.
What Would Selling The WWE Mean For The Company?
There are a lot of things that go into making the WWE successful. The most prominent area of income is still their television contracts, which brings in millions of dollars. However, as CBS Sports reported, the WWE Network has brought in more money for the company, with 1.5 million subscribers in 2017, which resulted in $158 million in revenue.
The television ratings are down, but that is true across all TV shows. This might be due to things like streaming services, Hulu and more showing the WWE product. However, while attendance is also down, CBS Sports also reported that revenue for live events is up. According to reports, the attendance may be down due to raised ticket prices, but that also means more profit.
Stephanie McMahon, 41, told Bloomberg that the WWE has changed from “seedy… barroom brawls” to a Disney-styled production. There is also the fact that the WWE has no real competition when it comes to wrestling companies at its level.
However, a financial analyst named James Clement told Bloomberg that there will be many concerned investors if Vince McMahon ever “abdicated the throne.” While Stephanie McMahon and her husband Triple H are waiting for their time to rule, the question remains whether or not the WWE can succeed without the man who built it into an empire.