In a story discussing the UFC television rights fees, The Business Journals revealed that WWE executives have already met with different networks and most recently with Fox in Los Angeles to show them the power of their programming as the deal with NBCUniversal comes to a close in late 2019.
NBCUniversal paid much less than WWE had hoped for several years ago, with WWE stocks taking a big, big tumble when the deal was announced and the company is trying to avoid making the same mistake. Chief Financial and Strategy officer George Barrios and EVP of Talent, Live Events, and Creative Paul “Triple H” Levesque were present for the meeting with Fox executives.
The Business Journals also reported that WWE met with CBS and Disney, along with digital-only Amazon and YouTube to present them with a review of their programming.
WWE’s team was unable to negotiate any money or future deals though during these meetings as NBCUniversal has the exclusivity until the spring of 2018 when it comes to negotiations.
The broadcast contract with NBCUniversal for WWE shows in the United States on USA Network expires on September 30, 2019. WWE is expected to announce the U.S. distribution plan for Raw and Smackdown sometime between May 2018 and September 2018.