WWE has completed a takeover of EVOLVE, buying the company and its most important asset, the tape library, marking WWE’s first acquisition since WCW in 2001. The news was originally broken by PWInsider.com and WWE has not put out an official statement yet.
There was news a couple of weeks ago that WWE was close to agreeing buying out EVOLVE, owned by Gabe Sapolsky and Sal Hamaoui, after the promotion encountered financial issues, mainly after COVID-19 hit. The last iPPV show was in January and not running anything during WrestleMania was deemed to be catastrophic in terms of finance.
Along with the purchase of all intellectual property comes the video tape library of EVOLVE and Dragon Gate USA. EVOLVE has 144 shows in the can, adding a couple of hundreds of hours of action to the WWE Network.
Mike Johnson of PWInsider.com also adds that several of EVOLVE’s talents will also be signed as part of the takeover and given developmental deals with NXT.
WWE and EVOLVE has shared a working relationship for the past five years and its co-owner, Gabe Sapolsky, is even a consultant for WWE in the NXT brand. WWE sent over their talent most of the time when EVOLVE had a show and EVOLVE has also provided a lot of its talent to the NXT brand.