Vince McMahon and members of senior management are hosting a conference call pertaining to the 2013 third quarter report. Here are highlights from the conference:
* WWE Chairman Vince McMahon, WWE CFO George Barrios, and WWE Investor Relations Michael Weitz are hosting the call.
* Vince said the increased television rights fees offset the “disappointing” SummerSlam numbers and video game sales.
* Vince said fans “didn’t buy the attraction, as most of you know these events are attraction driven.
* Vince mentions that they are looking for “traditional and non-traditional distribution” for the WWE Network.
* Vince said their largest television contracts are coming up both in the United States and in the United Kingdom.
* Barrios took over the call temporarily and read through the financial presentation.
* Barrios said that revenue increased nine percent and said it was largely due to increased licensing fees and to some extent live events.
* Barrios noted that “Total Divas” has averaged roughly 1.8 million viewers per week.
* Pay-per-view revenue was down ten percent “primarily due to the performance of the SummerSlam event.” This is despite the fact that WWE added new digital media platforms for their pay-per-view events, such as Playstation 3.
* The movies released under WWE Studios new film model are expected to bring a 13 percent return.
* Barrios noted that the company is confident that they can double or triple their 2012 results by 2015 via future television agreements and the WWE Network.
* Barrios said their key domestic television deals are expected to be done by “next April.”
* Barrios compared WWE to live sports. He said the similarities make WWE “DVR-proof.”
* Barrios discussed the potential WWE Network platforms, then opened up the line for calls.
* The first caller noted that the domestic television deals are expected to be finalized by April 2014 and whether they will maintain their current relationships or end up elsewhere. He questioned whether WWE Vince said there is a certain exclusive negotiating window for current partners that ends on the first of the year. He said they can go outside to other potential partners after that. Barrios said the timeline they are offering is typical for television rights negotiations.
* Vince was asked about the pay-per-view numbers. He once again stressed that pay-per-views are attraction driven. He said it was a “swing and a miss” as far as the attraction they went with. He said the declining numbers really don’t have to do with anything other than that.
* Vince closed out the conference call by wishing everyone a good say and saying, “The future looks bright.”