Is Vince McMahon Selling WWE Drums of war WWE and the unlikely sale of the company.
Nick Khan, president of WWE, is building his own army. Since his signing in mid-2020, he has surrounded himself with like-minded people with whom he had previously worked at DAZN and Creative Artist Agency.
It recently laid off more than 60 people in a corporate organizational chart restructuring, in which departments have been merged and others eliminated. This same week, we learned that Khan had been chosen on the WWE Board of Directors. There was also the dismissal of people like Braun Strowman, with a contract of more than $ 1M or Aleister Black, who justified the move as “budget cuts.”
All this set off the alarms. The company, with these movements, could be for sale. The clues are there. Power to make and break for Khan, multiple layoffs, restructurings, ditching high contracts, a widening of the margin between expenses and income, a safety cushion in terms of medium-term television contracts, a buoyant situation to present to shareholders, a turbulent time in which mergers and large purchases of companies are the order of the day (WarnerMedia-Discovery, Amazon-MGM, Disney-ESPN) … Everything seems to fit.
However, the reality is not so clear and it seems not to follow that path. The first thing that comes to mind, instinctively, is that the sale by Vince McMahon would be a major surprise. For how it is and for all that it has invested. WWE has been his home, his life and that of his family.
It is your private resort. His weekly trip to the Imserso. Then we think about the trigger for the debate: the layoffs. They are not unusual or out of the ordinary. They happen every year. And every year, whether it is true or not, the excuse is the same. The company has around 300 fighters on the payroll. Half don’t even smell television. He is overcontracted to tie up talent.
Andy’s shelves in Toy Story were full of dolls that he didn’t use. There is some parallel here. The policy on this, however, seems to have changed and Nick Khan is the driving force.
Its sweep in all areas, the change in the structural pillars of the company and, especially, the way it sees the future in the medium term is far from what was previously proposed. George Barrios and Michelle Wilson, former WWE co-presidents, were “McMahon cut.”
The business vision was similar: conservative, tight, reactionary. Not with Khan, who wants to change the way he acts. It is in that process. Putting everything to your liking. Establishing your ideas, your vision and your perspective. This has more to do with a change of pace and power than with the fine-tuning of the company.
Another fundamental aspect is the current evidence. The stock market remains immobile. There is no speculation among investors. There is no sale of shares or a pronounced change in trend. In addition, WWE has a lot of liquid money in motion, a lot of fixed costs and less and less variable. We would see those fixed costs (debts, leases, buildings, insurance, equipment …) reduce and close many of those operations before embarking on a sale.
In addition, television contracts play a fundamental role. They mean the biggest source of income for WWE, but also a stumbling block in terms of selling the company. Buying a behemoth like WWE implies the acquisition of all its rights, which are currently divided into various agreements.
Their exploitation and loads are complicated by international agreements that may or may not be in line with the new trend. The situation tells us, then, that a sale of the company is not impossible, but it is unlikely. At least in the short and medium term. Disney would be an option, although the one that would have an advantage is Comcast, which already has agreements with WWE for the rights of WWE Network (Peacock), Raw and NXT (USA Network). The truth is that the horizon, for WWE, looks convulsive and changing.