WWE Continues To Experience Wild Financial Year
The WWE and its chairman Vince McMahon continue to experience a rather strange financial year. From high stock prices to all time lows, they've seen it all.
The WWE started quite strong earlier this year, with stock prices being among the highest they have ever been. Things took a bad turn some months later though, as stock prices have fallen by a whopping 7%. Vince McMahon and his company still have a couple months left this year – we’ll see how it plays out.
Is Competition Influencing WWE’s Returns?
Compared to their second quarter in 2018, the WWE took a 4.5% decline for the second quarter in 2019. While the decline could be considered minimal, we are talking several hundred millions of dollars in revenue, from which 4.5% is a significant amount. It is certainly an amount big enough to worry Vince McMahon.
One of the explanations of the reduction in revenue could be the new competition in 2019 including the new promotion AEW. There are other indie promotions that could be taking some of WWE’s resident fans as well. There are several in the running – Ring of Honor, New Japan, and Impact Wrestling.
Evidence that the competition is hurting the WWE could arguably be found in the attendance and viewership numbers of the company. The sale of their consumer products has also decreased from $48.8 million to $23.1 million. The number of subscribers of the Network app has also decreased by 6% compared to last year.
Vince McMahon Makes Television Deals At The Worst Time?
Another theory that is floating around is the bad timing of the television deals that Vince made with Fox Network and USA Network. When the deals were signed with USA and Fox, the company was already on the decline. Add to that the respective changes that have been implemented by Fox, and you get a melting pot of potential disaster for investors.
WWE RAW Receives Record Low Viewership This Week https://t.co/ZlHJdEN3Db
— PWStream (@PWStream) October 29, 2019
On the flipside, the WWE’s struggles have been a good thing for rival AEW. As a new promotion, there is much excitement about the brand, instinctively drawing more viewers. Disgruntled fans of World Wrestling Entertainment also have a new place to go to, which contributes to some of the issues the company is experiencing.
Is Guidance The Key?
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One of the biggest issues that has been widely discussed in the media is the company’s creative process. Lots of wrestlers have been outspoken about the issue, stating that the lack of creative guidance and stability has been killing the wrestling giant.
— Smark Nation© (@Smark_Nation) July 24, 2017
While I do take rumors with a grain of salt, I do tend to agree with these as a WWE viewer. There are many episodes of Raw and SmackDown Live that seem to have been thought of at the last minute. While this could provide good results in some instances, it has not been working for the company at all. Add to that the weird events in Saudi Arabia and you have a real problem.
— KeefPope (@BrokenNero9) May 17, 2016
There is no consistency within World Wrestling Entertainment. It is also claimed that Vince McMahon rips up the script for shows on the same day, despite the work of writers. It seems there is no trust in the WWE’s resident creative department, and this certainly shows on screen. Is it time to look at the company structure or trust in the resident creative department a little more?