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WWE Q2 Investors Call Report: Vince Comments on AEW Using ‘Blood & Guts,’ Says Heyman & Bischoff Will Have a Lot of Latitude

July 25, 2019 | Posted by Larry Csonka
Paul Heyman Eric Bischoff WWE RAW Smackdown

Here are the complete highlights from today’s WWE Q2 investor’s call, where Vince McMahon commented on AEW, bringing back Paul Heyman & Eric Bischoff, and much more…

– Vince McMahon says the revenue is what it is, but have completed more TV deals and will have a new India deal completed soon. He hypes the hiring of Heyman & Bischoff, noting that with those hirings, he can focus on long-term storytelling and talent development. They are great promoters and are looking forward to the move to Fox this fall.

– George Barrios runs down the basics of the morning report. Barrios and Michelle Wilson hyped the new season of Miz & Mrs. as well as the renewal of Total Bellas. They added over 90 hours of new content on the WWE Network and had over 200 hours of original content on digital platforms. They discussed the new Netflix series and the new reality series on Quibi, will debut a new talk show on Fox Sports 1 in the Fall and the new A&E documentaries will debut in the first quarter of 2020.

– They had over 40 competitors trying out in China last week, end they will run Shanghai this September.

– They expect record revenue for the year following the new TV deals and another event in Saudi Arabia. They will also have a new TV deal in India by the end of the year.

– The Q&A starts with questions about the Saudi Arabia deal. Barrios says that they expect to sign a media rights deal in Saudi Arabia and will hold a second event there later this year.

– Barrios deflects questions on the India TV deal, because it’s an ongoing thing but he expects good things. He’s asked about consumption data and again deflects and refuses to discuss “internal data.” India is an important part of their localization plan.

– Barrios is asked about some Q4 and 2020 projections based on the new TV deals, but deflects and stays away from the topic.

– They are asked about bringing in Heyman & Bischoff, and Vince says that they have been brought in because he can’t “be in the weeds any longer,” and feels they will be good for their business. “Both have extensive backgrounds in ‘the business’… It allows me to have a broader overview. They’ll have a lot of latitude.”

– They’re asked about the updated WWE Network tiered pricing, and new additions to the service. We’ll start seeing things in the next 12 months, including some this year.

– They were asked about the recent Variety piece on the state of the product. Vince said they have “definitely turned the corner” on content. The new Executive Directors can give them more depth on storylines and talent development. They will be edgier, but remain PG; no blood and guts like our potential new competitor, we have graduated to a more sophisticated product.

– When asked about shifting their UK deal to BT Sports in the UK. Barrios said they ultimately make choices based on evaluating the market and potential partners. They are excited but can’t go into details due to confidentiality clauses.

– Barrios says they were putting so much time and effort into evolving the WWE Network platform that they didn’t see the growth that they usually get around WrestleMania. They hadn’t done a lot of updates on the Network in recent months because they were focused on building and launching the new version, which they are very excited about.

-When asked about the potential of NXT shifting over to television from the WWE Network, Barrios said that with every piece of content, they have to evaluate where the best place to have that content placed is. You can have it supported via advertising or distributed directly via subscription. It’s a constant discussion and the one they spend the most time on, but they won’t comment on NXT directly.

– Michelle Wilson says Fox’s investment from a promotional standpoint is huge and Fox is looking to integrate WWE stars into other Fox programming when appropriate. Vince expects NBC Universal to step up their promotional game as well.

– On AEW, Vince says competition is good for everyone, but hopes that “their perceived competition” doesn’t continue with the blood and guts and can’t imagine TNT would want that.

article topics :

AEW, Vince McMahon, WWE, Larry Csonka