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Has wrestling bounced back in 2021 after the lows of 2020?

Just like many businesses and industries in 2020, 2021 was always going to prove to be a tough year for wrestling, but it would seem as though the WWE and others have managed to bounce back in a way that is rather encouraging.

Of course, the pandemic had a major toll on several sports all across the world as fans were unable to go, with the wrestling industry unable to put on a number of live events. This will have been detrimental to each of the promotions that exist in professional wrestling, as they put on a number of live shows each week, with their TV offering just a small part of the weekly calendar.

Attendances and viewing figures across a number of different sports around the world had suffered the same decline as the wrestling industry, with NBA basketball having been impacted significantly in 2020 as more and more fans were unable to enjoy the action that will have been provided on the court.

However, despite the disastrous year that 2020 was in regard to a host of things, it seems that there are a number of encouraging signs in 2021 suggesting that the industry as a whole is bouncing back in fine fashion, especially where the WWE are concerned.

WWE’s report shows significant levels of encouragement

When taking a look at the latest financial report that has been completed by the WWE, it would appear that the company is being able to benefit from an increase in interest once again with many of the figures starting to return back to pre-pandemic levels.

Of course, the WWE is not the only promotion that is involved within the wrestling scene and with the likes of All Elite Wrestling (AEW), Impact Wrestling (Impact!), Ring of Honor (ROH) and National Wrestling Alliance (NWA) all representing the industry, it could be inferred that the figures shown by the organisation that is considered to be the premier promotion can provide some light on how the entire sector is doing.

Revenues have increased

When looking at the revenue that was generated over the second quarter of 2021, it would seem 2021 is allowing for wrestling to bounce back as the WWE managed to generate an increase of 19% ($42.2 million) compared to the same time period of last year with the return of live events, including the world-famous WrestleMania event that took place in Tampa, Florida. It was the first ticketed live event since the first quarter of 2020.

Operating income was shown to be down, though, although this will have largely been down to the expenses that were required to be used for the return of live events, as well as the need to bring back employees who had been furloughed during the pandemic.

Demand for tickets has soared

Since the WWE had returned to live events from July 16, 2021, they held five different events that aired between then and the end of September 2021. These events showed that demand for them was still as high as ever, as each of the events held had been at or close to fall capacity, whilst current demand for future events is currently on par with the numbers that were recorded in 2019.

Demand has also experienced an increase when it comes down to viewing figures, with digital video views being a record 11.2 billion, an increase of 13% whereas the hours consumed were another record, as 394 million (an increase of 5%) had been experienced.

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