REPORT: Endeavor nears deal to buy WWE that would see it merge with the UFC

Originally published at REPORT: Endeavor nears deal to buy WWE that would see it merge with the UFC

CNBC has reported that Endeavor is in advanced plans to buy WWE.

Endeavor is the parent company of the UFC. The deal could be announced as soon as Monday, according to Alex Sherman, who cites “people familiar with the matter.”

The UFC and WWE would remain separately run but would merge to form one new publicly traded company under the reported deal.

The article states that Endeavor would own 51% of the new sports and entertainment company, with WWE shareholders owning the remaining 49%. The Endeavor deal would give WWE an enterprise value of $9.3 billion.

Also according to the report, Ari Emanuel, the current CEO of Endeavor, is expected to act as Chief Executive of both Endeavor and the newly formed company. Vince McMahon is expected to be Executive Chairman.

Endeavor President Mark Shapiro would retain his role. Dana White would remain President of the UFC, with Nick Khan, serving as President of WWE in the new set-up.

The article outlines a high level of detail of the reported deal but states that its sources declined to be named due to the confidential nature of the discussions.

Vince McMahon stepped down from an active role in WWE last summer amid multiple allegations of serious sexual misconduct and a company investigation into payments made to his alleged victims.

He returned to the WWE Board of Directors in January after an exchange of letters in December 2022.

McMahon wrote a letter to the Board on December 20th, 2022, stating that it was “critical” that he rejoin the Board as Executive Chairman to explore “strategic alternatives” and pursue media rights negotiations.

The Board initially rebuffed this unanimously in a reply on December 27th. However, McMahon, who controls around 80% of WWE voting stock, then wrote again, stating, in part:

I would like to be clear that unless I have direct involvement and input as Executive Chairman from the outset, I will not be able to support or approve any media rights deals or strategic transaction (including any commitments made by or on behalf of the Company regarding a potential transaction or process).

The Board then unanimously reversed its position, appointing McMahon Executive Chairman, as well as former WWE Presidents Michelle Wilson and George Barrios. They took up their current posts on January 6th.

Stephanie McMahon resigned as co-CEO less than a week later on January 10th.

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Really looking forward to subscribing to a service and then having to pay an extra $60-70 for a PPV behind a paywall.

Not really, but at least it looks like Saudi Arabia isn’t buying the company.


If this gets finalized, it would position Vince as the most powerful person aside from Ari Emanuel, in the whole situation. Am I wrong?

It certainly looks like it would complete Vince’s planned return to taking back control of WWE’s operations. And we all know Nick Khan will support whatever Vince sees fit.

Now, I also have to imagine, there will be a ton of layoffs on the logistics and technical ends of things. I don’t know enough about how Endeavor and UFC deal with talent to speak on that, but if this positions UFC and WWE as the same organization, then cutting down redundancies in live event logistics, broadcasting, and other business related aspects will be a complete bloodbath.

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I agree with this. At least it’s not Saudi Arabia. You pretty much already have to turn off your moral compass to enjoy pro-wrestling. But if WWE was owned by Saudi that would become impossible.

And IF Endevaour does decide to use the UFC PPV model then WWE is going to have to be consistently MUCH better every month to draw enough interest to make it work. So I don’t expect them to do that lol. Maybe for WrestleMania & SummerSlam it’s extra.

If this leads to Vince getting back to being regularly involved with creative then I would just be sad. We’ve seen how quickly WWE can catch fire without him. Putting him back in charge promoting big men and punishing talent would kill all the momentum they have. Hopefully Endevaour sees that and keeps Hunter in charge of that aspect of the business.

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Thats what torrents are for :wink:

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Or, if the international versions of the WWE Network remain in tact, Nord VPN dot com slash Post Wrestling!