WWE Announces 7% Reduction In Staff

Vince McMahon was quoted in WWE’s 2014 quarter two earnings release, where the company reported a Net loss of $14.5 million for the quarter and some very underwhelming WWE Network subscriber numbers.

While McMahon expressed optimism, Chief Financial Officer George Barrios announced that WWE will be reducing their staff by 7%. The comments are included in their entirety below:

“WWE’s core business metrics remain strong, and WWE Network continues to be the single greatest opportunity to transform WWE’s business model. During the quarter, we developed plans to make WWE Network available globally starting August 12, and completed a long-term content deal in Canada with Rogers Communications,” stated Vince McMahon, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer. “Additionally, we identified efficiencies that will improve our 2015 OIBDA outlook by $30 million. Based on these initiatives, we are optimistic about our potential to drive long-term growth.”

“As we expanded WWE Network to 700,000 subscribers, our earnings performance surpassed our guidance, which targeted a Net loss ranging from $15 million to $18 million. Our key metrics continued to show strength as average North American attendance increased 11%, representing the fourth consecutive quarter of year-over-year growth. Raw and SmackDown TV ratings increased 5% and 3%, respectively, marking SmackDown’s 7th quarter of growth among the past 8 quarters,” added George Barrios, Chief Strategy & Financial Officer. “We identified efficiencies across WWE, which include a 7% reduction in staff, and improved our 2015 OIBDA outlook by $30 million. We developed plans to make WWE Network available in over 170 countries, and entered a 10-year deal that provides for the WWE Network launch as a traditional a-la-carte Pay-TV channel in Canada and renews our television licensing agreement for Raw and SmackDown. The progress in our strategic initiatives reinforces our view that successful execution of our WWE Network strategy can generate meaningful economic returns.”

We reported on Wednesday that mass job cuts were expected and sadly, those fears look to be realized.

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  • Mysterion

    Two parter, sorry.

    Will the former employees at least have been given a severance package? And, Richard, are you a stockholder too?

  • Splat

    I really thought they would hit a million subscribers easily… I feel it’s a great deal at $10 a month.

  • Tom Mayer

    Those who would pay for it, the adults, aren’t entirely happy with the product. The pg thing is okay for the occasional show visit, and weekly dvr but a 6month commitment is asking a lot for an ever changing economy.

    Month to month, people’s bills change, things come up. People lose their jobs, like the 7% of their employees today.

    • Tom Mayer

      Then there was a rumor a month after the network launch that they would increase the price to $11.99

      They were sending out feelers about it. It seemed sketchy, people don’t like the untrusting bait and switch.

  • Steve

    FYI – this story mas made breakfast TV in Australia. David Koch is an economist and host of Sunrise and he spoke about this story in his finance brief. The panel then had a quick conversation surrounding how no one knew that WWE employed so many staff – 850 was the number quoted.

  • Mario

    This Rogers PPV deal really sucks for us in Canada !