Brandon Ross, a LightShed partner and analyst, spoke with Brandon Thurston and Jesse Collings of Wrestlenomics about WWE business following Vince McMahon’s departure amid investigations into a series of hush money payments McMahon made to former female employees accusing harassment, misbehaviour, and abuse committed by of McMahon and former-Head of Talent Relations John Laurinaitis. During discussion, Ross discussed the idea of Endeavor purchasing WWE.
Endeavor is a talent and media agency holding company based in the United States. The William Morris Agency and the original Endeavor Talent Agency merged to form the company in April 2009. The company purchased UFC in 2016. Ross stated, I think this actually syncs with the conversation we were just having. Consider the UFC acquisition and how it has been handled. They permitted Dana and UFC to operate as separate entities while utilising all of Endeavor’s facilities to help them improve and unleash revenue.
A great example of this, in my opinion, is sponsorship. We’ve all heard that WWE has been severely under-monetized in terms of sponsoring for a long time. Consider this: where does earnings of this company come from? It is based on such rights agreements. Since we all know, Nick Khan is fantastic at this. His background with CAA Creative Artists Agency as well as his previous participation in this. But Ari Emanuel is no slouch, as well as the idea of pairing those two is that you basically have a dream team kind of approaching all of these negotiations.
Nick Khan’s positive relationship with Endeavor
Ross discussed WWE co-CEO Nick Khan’s positive relationship with Endeavor, which dates back to Khan’s time as a CAA agent. According to Ross, Nick & Endeavor management have a relationship. That dates all the way back to Nick’s early days as an agent. Ross also stated that CAA is not currently looking into the WWE, but it is not a bad idea for them to be. CAA is a talent & sports agency headquartered in Los Angeles, California. It was established in 1975.
I don’t consider that’s where CAA is looking directly now, Ross said. Endeavor clearly has public currency, and stock would be part of the deal’s remuneration. Realizing how much the shares are worth and having a public mark on it is a big deal in fact. I don’t think that’s a terrible idea, particularly since CAA has recently expanded. But you just don’t get the infrastructure synergies between UFC and WWE that you would receive with the existing company and, frankly, some live entertainment businesses there.