Vince McMahon Says A Deal To Sell WWE's Pay-Per-View Rights Was Close Before The Coronavirus Pandemic
The WWE Network hangs on by a thread...
Back in January, Vince McMahon announced WWE was looking to sell their pay-per-view rights before the end of March. It is widely known that the company has been in negotiations with ESPN, but no deal has been completed as of yet, in part, because of the coronavirus pandemic.
During WWE's Q1 2020 results conference call, McMahon and Frank A. Riddick III were asked if the pandemic had ended streaming providers interest in acquiring the pay-per-view rights.
Riddick III said: "The main issue has been they just have their own issues to deal with in trying to respond to COVID-19, but we haven't heard that they don't have a lack of interest in the property. That's not the case. I think we're excited about the performance in the network in this environment, I think it only enhances the value of it and gives us more options. But we're still pursuing a strategic transaction."
McMahon added onto this point and confirmed the company was close to a deal before the pandemic started.
Vince added: "I think that the COVID-19 stuff caught everybody with their pants down. We had a number of individuals who were very interested in our network and just when you think you're getting close the bottom fell out. Very close with a number of individuals that really want our network, on the other hand, we're continuing to invest in it with a free tier."