WWE merger with UFC will likely be lead by Ari Emanuel
WWE and the corporate that runs Final Preventing Championship will mix to create a $21.4 billion sports activities leisure firm.
A brand new publicly traded firm will likely be fashioned that homes the UFC and WWE manufacturers, with Endeavor Group Holdings Inc. taking a 51% controlling curiosity within the new firm. Present WWE shareholders will maintain a 49% stake.
The businesses put the enterprise worth of UFC at $12.1 billion and WWE’s worth at $9.3 billion.
The brand new enterprise, which doesn’t but have a reputation, will likely be lead by Endeavor CEO Ari Emanuel. Vince McMahon, govt chairman at WWE, will serve in the identical position on the new firm. Dana White will proceed as president of UFC and Nick Khan will function president of WWE.
“Collectively, we will likely be a $21+ billion reside sports activities and leisure powerhouse with a collective fanbase of greater than a billion individuals and an thrilling development alternative,” McMahon stated in an announcement on Monday.
The announcement comes after McMahon, the founder and majority shareholder of WWE, returned to the corporate in January and stated that it may very well be up on the market.
Rumors swirled about who may be interested by shopping for WWE, with chatter specializing in corporations corresponding to Endeavor, Disney, Fox, Comcast, Amazon and Saudi Arabia’s Public Funding Fund.
Media business analysts considered WWE as a beautiful acquisition goal given its world attain and dependable fanbase, which incorporates everybody from minors to seniors and a variety of incomes.
The corporate held its marquee occasion, WrestleMania, over the weekend. Final 12 months, WWE booked income of $1.3 billion.
The corporate can be a social media powerhouse. It surpassed 16 billion social video views within the last quarter of final 12 months. It has almost 94 million YouTube subscribers and has greater than 20 million followers on TikTok. Its feminine wrestlers comprise 5 out of the highest 15 most adopted feminine athletes on this planet, throughout Facebook, Twitter & Instagram, led by Ronda Rousey with 36.1 million followers.
WWE had greater than 7.5 billion digital and social media views in January and February of this 12 months, up 15% from the identical time-frame a 12 months in the past.
The brand new firm plans to commerce on the New York Inventory Trade below the “TKO” ticker image. Its board can have 11 members, with six being appointed by Endeavor and 5 being appointed by WWE.
The transaction, which was accepted by the boards of Endeavor and WWE, is focused to shut within the second half of the 12 months.
Shares of World Wrestling Leisure Inc., based mostly in Stamford, Connecticut, fell greater than 8% earlier than the opening bell. Shares of Endeavor, based mostly in Beverly Hills, California, rose almost 3%.