News regarding the state of the WWE Network
Submitted by Aaron Rift on 07/31/2020 at 09:09 AM

During a recent shareholders meeting, WWE Chief Executive Officer Frank Riddick commented on the state of the WWE Network:

“The free version of the Network was launched June 1st as a platform that was designed to effectively convert viewers to subscribers while preserving the value of our premium content. Given this was just launched in June, we have positive early results, but nothing definitive. Given where we are and we believe that, ultimately, by enhancing engagement we’ll enhance the value of the Network, as well as the economic potential we may be able to realize in a future transaction.”

“Payment tiers at this time, we do not believe the development of a premium tiered content strategy is the optimum approach for maximizing network subscription value. In the near term, we’re focused on leveraging the free version that we just spoke about to enable subscribers to sample our content more easily, develop local currency pricing in select international markets in global currency, as we said, and further develop our advertising capability.”

WWE saw an increase of 195,000 subscribers to the Network during the second quarter. Jayar Donlan (Executive Vice President, Digital & Social Content) commented on the free tier helping with subscription numbers during the company's second-quarter earnings call:

“There are a few things going on. I am not going to touch of anything specific on the free version. But obviously, launching that is a contributor. But I just think, in general, our promotion across our platforms. We are doing new things across the digital and social ecosystem, as well as with our TV partners. You would have been able to sample content on ESPN or FS 1 driving back to the network.”

“We talked about some of the compelling content we have had, everything from Undertaker’s Last Ride, and we are an attraction business. I think we have had some really fantastic cinematic mach attractions in our recent PPVs. And then the last piece would be, there has just been some macro industry factors, which is just a general growth in digital viewing and some that’s accelerated post-COVID.”

Vince McMahon also commented:

“We didn’t hurt ourselves by going to the free as opposed to a 30-day free trial. We have not hurt ourselves and that much we can definitely say.” (quotes courtesy of and

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