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They're expected to see all the possible bids by early March, correct? If Steph thought they'd triple their TV fees, why would she sell HALF her holdings just months before?

When to the best of your knowledge has Stephanie McMahon had particularly keen insight into the future of the business?

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Creatively? Point. But surely she's aware of the numbers being tossed around in meetings with the network suits. Even if it's not a concrete amount, I'd be shocked if she wasn't in the know of ballpark figures. Vince may want NASCAR money, but this is the same guy who thought he could compete with the NFL.

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I don't know if you guys are still talking about it, but I want to cast some doubt on that 800,000-1,000,000 subscribers break-even point.  As I remember from the person that brought it up, that was a quote from just one outlet, right?  Because that 0.8-1.0 million number is the same break-even point mentioned when the WWE was looking at doing an HBO-style subscription TV channel, so it seems likely that the outlet that reported that number this week just did some lousy research.

 

That said, 800,00 * 10 = $8 million dollars a month (just to use 800k as a starting point).  How does that compare to their 13 PPVs a month?  The costs it eliminates is the PPV-associated fees, which are apparently significant, while the costs it adds are whatever it takes to make crap like Legends House (which was apparently so boring that they couldn't find a channel to air it after the first WWE Network idea fell apart in hilarious fashion) and the (admittedly low) bandwidth costs.  I'm crazy deep into speculationland here, but I imagine $8 million a month is quite possibly a revenue improvement from the previous PPV model.

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From the miscellanous thread:
 

 

Did you fail to note that they're utilizing MLB.tv's infrastructure, rather than creating their own from scratch?
 

If WWE doesn't liberally make things better, they'll lose subscribers, when they're gonna have trouble attracting mass numbers of them in the first place. If they don't make a sizable investment in the infrastructure of this thing, and instead do it on the cheap, it's gonna cost them plenty in the long run.


That's a yes to my previous question, then.

 

Sure is. First I've heard of the MLB.tv connection, but it does beg the question - what happens when both MLB and WWE are utilizing the network? I know they're gonna have to beef it up, but the question is, how much will they beef it up? And there will be some problem at some point, the question is how the WWE handles it.

 

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FSW needs to watch Spring Stampede '94. Actually, '94 prior to Hogan's arrival... most of it is fucking great but Spring Stampede might be the best PPV ever.

In like a year, I WILL!

 

 

How about you just move to the greatest country in the world?

 

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Personally, I would be shocked if they had any trouble whatsoever hitting 1 million subscribers.

 

I know someone earlier was talking about how most of the non-WM PPV's average around 300k buys, but I think Wrestlemania buyrates are actually a better predictor for the Network. 

 

Wrestlemania buyers are your mix of current die-hards, plus casual fans, plus fans who don't really watch anymore, but buy it because it's Wrestlemania.

 

If 1 million people paid to watch Wrestlemania 29, I don't see why 1 million people wouldn't pay to see Wrestlemania 30 for the same price, plus EVERYTHING else that comes with the Network. Even on a conservative estimate of let's say, half of last years WM buyers opt for the Network this year, that's still 500,000 people.

 

That isn't even factoring in the countless number of non-WWE wrestling fans, or fans who don't watch wrestling anymore but want access to a digital archive of WWE/WCW/ECW. That also isn't even factoring in the amount of people who stream these PPV's for free who may choose to just pay the small Network fee to do so now.

 

I don't see them having any trouble hitting 1 million and doing so fairly quickly.

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I'm currently watching 1999 Raws and there is some vicious chair shots to the head. Do you think WWE will edit those out?

 

 

 

I doubt it. In the FAQ, it said archived content will not all be PG.

 

I recently re-watched a lot of the attitude era as well, and the amount of chair shots to the head was jarring, but there was a lot less blading than I expected. Guess that wasn't a main event staple until 2002 or so.

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There's probably an answer to this question somewhere in the WWE's FAQ, but I'm way too lazy to look it up.

 

Can't casual/Wrestlemania fans just sign up for March or April or whenever Wrestlemania is, then drop the service after that?

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There's probably an answer to this question somewhere in the WWE's FAQ, but I'm way too lazy to look it up.

 

Can't casual/Wrestlemania fans just sign up for March or April or whenever Wrestlemania is, then drop the service after that?

The talk is that initial signup is for 6 months.

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There's probably an answer to this question somewhere in the WWE's FAQ, but I'm way too lazy to look it up.

 

Can't casual/Wrestlemania fans just sign up for March or April or whenever Wrestlemania is, then drop the service after that?

The talk is that initial signup is for 6 months.

 

Then after that? Can people sign up monthly, or do you have to commit to six-month chunks?

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How about when Miss Kitty showed her tits?

 

One of the biggest mark-out moments of my 15-year-old life.

 

 

I've been loving Classics OnDemand for the last five years. They've already been playing everything the Network will have (Countdown, RAW, Nitro, ECW, PrimeTime, old PPVs, house shows and weekly TV shows). I think a lot of people will really love it, and since watching entire seasons in short periods is the thing to do now - I hope they allow people to do that some day.

 

I originally signed up because I was pumped about old WWF shows, but NWA: World Class Championship Wrestling ended up being one of my favorite things to watch, which I'd never seen as a kid.

 

 

 

Best theme song award still goes to this:

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That isn't even factoring in the countless number of non-WWE wrestling fans, or fans who don't watch wrestling anymore but want access to a digital archive of WWE/WCW/ECW. That also isn't even factoring in the amount of people who stream these PPV's for free who may choose to just pay the small Network fee to do so now.

 

I don't see them having any trouble hitting 1 million and doing so fairly quickly.

I haven't watched a WWE show in years and years  (apart from the Kharma appearances) and I will most likely be signing up.

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I don't know if you guys are still talking about it, but I want to cast some doubt on that 800,000-1,000,000 subscribers break-even point.  As I remember from the person that brought it up, that was a quote from just one outlet, right?  Because that 0.8-1.0 million number is the same break-even point mentioned when the WWE was looking at doing an HBO-style subscription TV channel, so it seems likely that the outlet that reported that number this week just did some lousy research.

 

That said, 800,00 * 10 = $8 million dollars a month (just to use 800k as a starting point).  How does that compare to their 13 PPVs a month?  The costs it eliminates is the PPV-associated fees, which are apparently significant, while the costs it adds are whatever it takes to make crap like Legends House (which was apparently so boring that they couldn't find a channel to air it after the first WWE Network idea fell apart in hilarious fashion) and the (admittedly low) bandwidth costs.  I'm crazy deep into speculationland here, but I imagine $8 million a month is quite possibly a revenue improvement from the previous PPV model.

 

It was Vince himself that said the breakeven point would be 800k - 1M subscribers. You also figure that the number includes the sunk costs they wish to recoup from their attempts at the HBO-style network. I believe I heard they've invested about $40M total into the network, and with $37M in cash according to their most recent quarter's balance sheet, that's a sizeable chunk of change, especially when they've only earned $11M in actual profit over the past year.

 

Personally, I would be shocked if they had any trouble whatsoever hitting 1 million subscribers.

 

I know someone earlier was talking about how most of the non-WM PPV's average around 300k buys, but I think Wrestlemania buyrates are actually a better predictor for the Network. 

 

Wrestlemania buyers are your mix of current die-hards, plus casual fans, plus fans who don't really watch anymore, but buy it because it's Wrestlemania.

 

If 1 million people paid to watch Wrestlemania 29, I don't see why 1 million people wouldn't pay to see Wrestlemania 30 for the same price, plus EVERYTHING else that comes with the Network. Even on a conservative estimate of let's say, half of last years WM buyers opt for the Network this year, that's still 500,000 people.

 

That isn't even factoring in the countless number of non-WWE wrestling fans, or fans who don't watch wrestling anymore but want access to a digital archive of WWE/WCW/ECW. That also isn't even factoring in the amount of people who stream these PPV's for free who may choose to just pay the small Network fee to do so now.

 

I don't see them having any trouble hitting 1 million and doing so fairly quickly.

 

The WM buyrate should NOT be the comparative figure being used here. You're right in that WM has that type of mix of viewership, but it's also a one time cost, in contrast to the recurring monthly charges of the Network. The costs may be the same, but the difference in payment affects consumer decisions. Also, whereas a bunch of people will gather at a certain location for WM, be it a bar or the friend with the 60 inch LED, people aren't going to be gathering around an iPad to watch Nitro from 1997 (yeah they could always Chromecast it, but that's a percentage of a percentage we're talking here).

 

And again, by saying "I don't see them having any trouble hitting 1M and doing so fairly quickly," you're implicitly stating that over 5X the typical PPV viewership, and a THIRD of RAWs total audience (which they watch for FREE) is going to sign up for this? I'm sorry, but I don't believe that's realistic at all. Until this expands internationally, it tops out around 500k. And that's being optimistic.

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But a one time cost of sixty bucks turns lots of people off.  10 bucks a month, even if it works out to being the same thing for a six month commitment, for TONS more content is going to sway lots of people.  I usually have 4 or 5 guys over to my house for Mania each year, so WWE is only getting 1 buy from 5 potential customers.  All 5 of us are planning to buy the network.  That includes 2 huge fans and 3 guys who only watch Wrestlemania/stopped caring after the Attitude era.

 

Small sample size and I'm certainly not suggesting they'll hit a million people no problem.  I just want it to be successful enough to stay around and I'll be thrilled.

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The general consensus is that Vince wants NASCAR money.

Even if they fall well short of that, the expectations are that they may more than triple their current rights fees.

Okay, so their current TV contract (going to use domestic and foreign as a lump sum) amounts to $140M of revenue, with $505M in total revenue for the trailing twelve months. If they're pitching NASCAR as their closest comparison, with their $830M TV contract, we'll assume for safetys sake WWE can get roughly half of that, which would still TRIPLE their current rate, for $420M in revenue ($140 X 3), which I think is pretty generous. (A poll at bleacherreport had majority of people predicting a 25-50% increase, but that's not exactly scientific) Again for safetys sake, we'll assume that all other sources of revenue (PPV, merch, video gamesn DVDs) will remain at their current levels. That gives us total revenue for 2015 (when I assume the TV contracts will go into effect) of $784M. Over the past 10 years, their net profit margin has mostly been in the 8 - 11% range, but since 2011 it's been 5%, 6.5%, and 2.2%. Seems to be largely due to an increase in SG&A costs. Even though SG&A costs are typically costs that once they start rising, they're really hard to reverse, we'll be a bit generous here and assume a 9% net profit margin for 2015. Finally, assuming the number of shares remains constant (even though over the past 10 years the number has increased from 68.6M to 75M currently, for simplicity sake let it be that no more dilution occurs), that gives us net income of $70.56M, and with 75M shares, $.94 of earnings per share in 2015. At the current price of $17 per share, that's a forward Price/Earnings ratio of 18.

That's a reasonably good PE ratio, all things considered (especially when it's trailing twelve months PE is a mind-blowing 114, and even the analysts forward PE is a skyhigh 52). But the million dollar question is, is it realistic that WWE will be able to TRIPLE their TV fees? Yes they're DVR-proof, yes they're strong and consistent ratings. But assuming that it's NBCU they resign with, on account that FOX has UFC, and the other networks most likely can't shell out almost half a billion a year, does NBCU really pay triple for programming that may or may not have any other outlets?

 

 

Also, if they leave or renegotiate their contract with NBCU, they get ad revenue back, which they haven't had since they left Spike, and accounted then for around 50 million/year.

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Also, if they leave or renegotiate their contract with NBCU, they get ad revenue back, which they haven't had since they left Spike, and accounted then for around 50 million/year.

 

 

Makes the numbers work even better given their current dismal margins, but all of this amounts to NBCU forking out almost 4x as much as what they're paying now for it. And again, if these were the actual figures being tossed around by network suits, I don't think Steph would've sold half her shares. And since this ties in with Network subscriptions:

 

RAW's ballpark average rating is about 3.3, which is about 3.8M viewers a week. HOWEVER, in the coveted 18-49 demo, they pull roughly a 1.5 per week, which equates to 1.75M viewers. I don't think it's a stretch to say that the remaining 2M or so viewers isn't made up of the 50+ age range, so we'll say that about 1.9M of that amount consists of the under 18 age range. 

 

For advertising purposes, that's actually pretty good, as marketing suits love targeting the kiddies. So it is entirely possible that they could get those Ad rights back, or at least demand an increase in those fees.

 

However, regarding the Network, that's REALLY bad. More than half of RAWs entire audience consists of an audience that, by and large, doesn't have a credit card, let alone a job. Yes there are the few 16 - 17 year olds that work weekends, and yes there are those with parents that will pay the $9 a month for their kids to watch this. But it's impossible to quantify the actual amount, and I don't think it's a stretch to say that maybe 5 - 10% of this viewership signs up, accounting for about 150-200K subscribers.

 

That means WWE needs roughly HALF of the entire RAW audience in the 18-49 demo to sign up for this to break even. **HALF**. To put this in more comparative terms, being generous and assuming WrestleMania does 600k buys, with approx. 100k of those in the under 18 demo, they need to convince twice the number of the people who order WrestleMania to subscribe to this network. I don't know how anyone can say with a straight face they'll have no problem reaching 1M. That's beyond ridiculous.

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Also, if they leave or renegotiate their contract with NBCU, they get ad revenue back, which they haven't had since they left Spike, and accounted then for around 50 million/year.

 

 

Makes the numbers work even better given their current dismal margins, but all of this amounts to NBCU forking out almost 4x as much as what they're paying now for it. And again, if these were the actual figures being tossed around by network suits, I don't think Steph would've sold half her shares. And since this ties in with Network subscriptions:

 

RAW's ballpark average rating is about 3.3, which is about 3.8M viewers a week. HOWEVER, in the coveted 18-49 demo, they pull roughly a 1.5 per week, which equates to 1.75M viewers. I don't think it's a stretch to say that the remaining 2M or so viewers isn't made up of the 50+ age range, so we'll say that about 1.9M of that amount consists of the under 18 age range. 

 

For advertising purposes, that's actually pretty good, as marketing suits love targeting the kiddies. So it is entirely possible that they could get those Ad rights back, or at least demand an increase in those fees.

 

However, regarding the Network, that's REALLY bad. More than half of RAWs entire audience consists of an audience that, by and large, doesn't have a credit card, let alone a job. Yes there are the few 16 - 17 year olds that work weekends, and yes there are those with parents that will pay the $9 a month for their kids to watch this. But it's impossible to quantify the actual amount, and I don't think it's a stretch to say that maybe 5 - 10% of this viewership signs up, accounting for about 150-200K subscribers.

 

That means WWE needs roughly HALF of the entire RAW audience in the 18-49 demo to sign up for this to break even. **HALF**. To put this in more comparative terms, being generous and assuming WrestleMania does 600k buys, with approx. 100k of those in the under 18 demo, they need to convince twice the number of the people who order WrestleMania to subscribe to this network. I don't know how anyone can say with a straight face they'll have no problem reaching 1M. That's beyond ridiculous.

 

You are taking for granted the fact that the WWE is as close to guaranteed ratings that exists on cable.  Then take into consideration that there is no off season, someone is going to pay them what they want, because at the end of the day it is worth it.  Every other sports league and TV show, no matter how popular, goes away for at least six months, they provide 52 weeks of live programming that gets solid consistent ratings.  In 2014 that is very rare, and extremely valuable.

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Also, if they leave or renegotiate their contract with NBCU, they get ad revenue back, which they haven't had since they left Spike, and accounted then for around 50 million/year.

 

 

Makes the numbers work even better given their current dismal margins, but all of this amounts to NBCU forking out almost 4x as much as what they're paying now for it. And again, if these were the actual figures being tossed around by network suits, I don't think Steph would've sold half her shares. And since this ties in with Network subscriptions:

 

RAW's ballpark average rating is about 3.3, which is about 3.8M viewers a week. HOWEVER, in the coveted 18-49 demo, they pull roughly a 1.5 per week, which equates to 1.75M viewers. I don't think it's a stretch to say that the remaining 2M or so viewers isn't made up of the 50+ age range, so we'll say that about 1.9M of that amount consists of the under 18 age range. 

 

For advertising purposes, that's actually pretty good, as marketing suits love targeting the kiddies. So it is entirely possible that they could get those Ad rights back, or at least demand an increase in those fees.

 

However, regarding the Network, that's REALLY bad. More than half of RAWs entire audience consists of an audience that, by and large, doesn't have a credit card, let alone a job. Yes there are the few 16 - 17 year olds that work weekends, and yes there are those with parents that will pay the $9 a month for their kids to watch this. But it's impossible to quantify the actual amount, and I don't think it's a stretch to say that maybe 5 - 10% of this viewership signs up, accounting for about 150-200K subscribers.

 

That means WWE needs roughly HALF of the entire RAW audience in the 18-49 demo to sign up for this to break even. **HALF**. To put this in more comparative terms, being generous and assuming WrestleMania does 600k buys, with approx. 100k of those in the under 18 demo, they need to convince twice the number of the people who order WrestleMania to subscribe to this network. I don't know how anyone can say with a straight face they'll have no problem reaching 1M. That's beyond ridiculous.

 

You are taking for granted the fact that the WWE is as close to guaranteed ratings that exists on cable.  Then take into consideration that there is no off season, someone is going to pay them what they want, because at the end of the day it is worth it.  Every other sports league and TV show, no matter how popular, goes away for at least six months, they provide 52 weeks of live programming that gets solid consistent ratings.  In 2014 that is very rare, and extremely valuable.

 

Well, the English Premier League's offseason is just May-July really. And that's certainly become more of a thing in the States. But your point is a good one.

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Agree with the seasonality argument. But to say "someone is going to pay them what they want" is way off base, considering that while the ratings are consistent, there's certainly been a downtrend since the last time they re-signed. As a reminder, these figures are coming from the people who thought competition with the NFL was a smart business decision. Also, let's not forget that no matter what the ratings, there's always a certain stigma attached to wrasslin'. And yes, in the DVR-era these are all positive factors for sure, but to say that they amount to 3x as valuable from what the networks thought it was just 4 years earlier, I don't know how realistic that is.  

 

But my point regarding the Network numbers remain: No way they hit 1M until they expand internationally. And even then, their costs might rise, requiring a higher number of subscribers.

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www.wwe.com/inside/9-facts-you-need-to-know-about-wwe-network-26175464/

 

This clears up the Raw and Smackdown! replays.

I love how this says that all WCW PPVs will be available, seeming to imply that Nitros aren't, and then it goes and mentions that you'll get to see the fingerpoke of doom.  I fucking hate it when companies don't edit their shit, and the WWE is one of the worst at it.

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