In a surprising move, Ari Emanuel’s Endeavor Group is reportedly in advanced discussions to acquire Vince McMahon’s World Wrestling Entertainment.
This deal could lead to a new publicly traded company, with Endeavor owning 51% and WWE shareholders owning 49%. The deal values WWE at $9.3 billion, giving the wrestling company a significant financial boost. CNBC was the first to report. As per source:
UFC has paid off for Endeavor. Last year, the MMA league helped Endeavor’s sports business make $1.3 billion in revenue. Endeavor’s market cap stood at about $10.53 billion as of Friday’s close. The Endeavor-WWE deal values UFC at more than $12 billion.
This is quite a bump – UFC was valued at $4 billion in 2016.
Endeavor Group has been the parent company of UFC since 2016/
Endeavor’s CEO, Ari Emanuel, is expected to become CEO of both Endeavor and the new company, while McMahon will serve as executive chairman. Additionally, Dana White will continue his role as UFC president, and WWE CEO Nick Khan will serve as president of the wrestling business.
WWE’s flagship live event, WrestleMania, is currently taking place in California, making the news even more surprising. The company has been searching for a buyer for the past few months, and Vince McMahon returned as chairman in January to oversee the sale process.
The deal will effectively end WWE’s status as a family-run business, with McMahon’s father being the company’s founder.
Endeavor’s acquisition of WWE would bring together two of the world’s biggest combat sports and entertainment companies, offering a robust media and live events business, along with decades worth of intellectual property.
The move could also boost the popularity of UFC, which has already proven lucrative for Endeavor’s sports business, generating $1.3 billion in revenue last year.
Since 2014, Benny A. King has been fully immersed in the world of combat sports. Starting with a blog about Greco Roman wrestling, Benny’s passion for combat sports has led him to explore various disciplines.