Just a couple of weeks ago we remembered the anniversary of the historic day that it was announced that WCW was being sold to the WWF. It felt like a once-in-a-lifetime news story and it seemed like none of us would ever see the day that WWE itself would be part of a similar story. Today, it has been announced that WWE will merge with UFC under the “Endeavor” banner, with Endeavor holding majority ownership in the company.
So what does it all mean? While an outright sale of WWE has been the talk of the wrestling business for months, this move is more of a merger that will likely see most of WWE’s management remain in place – including Vince McMahon.
Ariel Emanuel, CEO of Endeavor, has stated that WWE will run in a similar fashion to the way UFC has – as Dana White has remained in control even after the company was sold to Endeavor. Of course, the big question already being asked is whether Vince McMahon will return to creative. The response has been hazy so far, with McMahon giving a “yes and no” response. According to Emanuel, he himself demanded McMahon stay on board with the new company due to their 23-year relationship.
Business-wise, Endeavor will hold a 51% controlling interest in the new company and existing WWE shareholders will hold a 49% interest in the new company. Much of this does sound like WWE will continue with a “business as usual” mindset as far as what we see on TV. This new super company will likely lead to most financial and sponsorship opportunities, and just bigger money all around.
This is definitely a huge story and it will undoubtedly continue to be interesting to see how this new WWE/UFC/Endeavor company unfolds.