Connect with us

Entertainment & Lifestyle

Netflix Takes Over Rights To WWE Monday Night Raw In $5bn Deal

Published

on

Netflix, Netflix

Netflix has penned a deal with WWE, that will see its flagship weekly live pro wrestling show begin airing exclusively on the streaming giant starting from January 2025.

BrandNewsDay understands that this will mark the first time in its three-decade history that “Raw” has not aired new episodes on a linear television network.

The streaming giant has agreed to pay $5 billion for the 10-year deal, according to people familiar with the terms who asked to not be identified because the numbers aren’t public. That represents a more than 30% increase on the current payments for Raw, but Netflix’s package includes other rights.

Advertisement

By comparison, sources also say WWE’s current five-year deal for “Raw” with NBCUniversal is worth approximately $250-260 million per year.

Raw is the most-watched of the WWE’s programs, drawing about 1.5 million viewers per show. It debuted in 1993 and has been the training ground for future movie stars Johnson and John Cena.

“We are excited to have WWE Raw, with its huge and passionate multigenerational fan base, on Netflix,” said Netflix chief content officer Bela Bajaria. “By combining our reach, recommendations and fandom with WWE, we’ll be able to deliver more joy and value for their audiences and our members.

Advertisement

” Raw is the best of sports entertainment, blending great characters and storytelling with live action 52 weeks a year and we’re thrilled to be in this long-term partnership with WWE.”

Netflix Takes Over Rights To WWE Monday Night Raw In $5bn Deal

Shares of TKO Group Holdings Inc, which owns WWE, jumped 19% in premarket trading in New York on the news. The conglomerate is adding former wrestler and actor Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson to its board, according to a securities filing on Tuesday.

READ:  Stanbic IBTC Nationwide Scholarship Programme Begins For Nigerian Youth

WWE’s current deal with NBCUniversal has “Raw” airing on USA Network until October 2024. According to an individual with knowledge of the situation, exactly where “Raw” will air between the end of that deal and the beginning of the Netflix deal is still being determined.

Advertisement

Under the deal, Netflix will become the exclusive home of “Raw” in the U.S., Canada, the U.K., Latin America and other territories once the deal begins, with more countries and regions to be added over time. Netflix will also become the television home for all WWE shows outside the U.S. That includes fellow weekly shows “SmackDown” and “NXT” as well as annual live events like WrestleMania, SummerSlam and the Royal Rumble, as well as documentaries, original series and additional projects.

“In its relatively short history, Netflix has engineered a phenomenal track record for storytelling,” said Nick Khan, WWE president. “We believe Netflix, as one of the world’s leading entertainment brands, is the ideal long-term home for Raw’s live, loyal, and ever-growing fan base.”

“This deal is transformative,” added Mark Shapiro, president and COO of WWE’s parent company TKO. “It marries the can’t-miss WWE product with Netflix’s extraordinary global reach and locks in significant and predictable economics for many years. Our partnership fundamentally alters and strengthens the media landscape, dramatically expands the reach of WWE, and brings weekly live appointment viewing to Netflix.”

Advertisement

The deal is the final step in WWE’s latest round of TV rights deals.

Acquiring rights to “Raw” solidifies Netflix’s push into live programming, with the streamer having just tested the waters with live streaming of late.

READ:  Stanbic IBTC Capital Bags Best Local Currency Bond House At EMEA Finance Awards 2023

With “Raw,” Netflix will have a live program that runs weekly year-round. Such a move is a necessity for the trailblazer of the streaming revolution, with multiple competitors already offering regular live sports programs to their subscribers. Amazon, for example, locked up the exclusive rights to the NFL’s “Thursday Night Football” for 10 years beginning with the 2023 season.

Advertisement
Facebook Comments
Advertisement