FOX CEO Talks WWE Relationship, Potential Sale, Upcoming Media Rights Deals
FOX says they have not entered into talks about a new TV deal with WWE.
FOX CEO Lachlan Murdoch spoke at the Morgan Stanley Tech Media and Telecom conference in San Francisco on Thursday, and was asked about the network possibly renewing its fights fees with WWE.
“I think they’ve been great partners, they’ve been great partners throughout our partnership, our relationship,” Murdoch said of WWE. “If they ultimately sell the business, I hope the acquirer… or I’m sure the acquirer will be as good a partner as they’ve been. I hope the management team stays intact because they’ve done a tremendous job. From a rights point of view, we’re focused on their rights renewal. We haven’t engaged with them on the rights yet, we’re ready to engage with them when they ask, when they’re ready. But ultimately, our appetite for renewal depends on what happens with the rest of our sports portfolio.”
WWE signed five year TV deals with FOX and NBCU back in 2018, for SmackDown and RAW. WWE reportedly made $2.35 billion over five years for the deals, which went into effect October 2019.
WWE CEO Nick Khan recently mentioned that WWE would not engage in media rights discussions until after a potential sale of the company. It’s been reported that WWE hopes to have the sale done by the summer, but Khan stated in February that a sale could take place within three months.
Fox CEO Lachlan Murdoch on possible rights renewal for $WWE Smackdown, at the Morgan Stanley TMT conference today. $FOXA
“We haven’t engaged with them on the rights yet. We’re ready to engage with them when they ask.” pic.twitter.com/HRsHkhzyir
— Brandon Thurston (@BrandonThurston) March 9, 2023
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(h/t to F4Wonline.com)