Upcoming WWE Network to be premium subscription service

The upcoming World Wrestling Entertainment (WWE) Network will be released as a premium subscription package distributed by cable companies, according to 411Mania. While no official launch date has been established, the television network will be an excellent source of recurring revenue for the company, as well as for various cable companies that would be carrying the channel on their listings.

“We don’t need to capture all of that [cable] audience,” Vince McMahon, the Chairman, CEO and Chairman of the Executive Committee of the WWE, said in a quarterly conference call with investors. “Just the ones that are very likely to join the Network, our model makes a considerable amount of revenue. Whatever we do will be an add-on [to WWE’s other programming] when you look at the entire production.”

According to Cageside Seats, the WWE recently released research that it compiled to justify the launching of a 24/7 interactive premium subscription network. The data revealed that there were 57 million cable television subscribers in the United States who were fans of the WWE. Of that group, approximately 20 percent, or 12 million, would describe themselves as hardcore fans who kept up with the company’s wrestling programming and regularly watched shows on other channels, including USA, ION and SyFy. Another 40 percent were casual fans who watched on occasion, and the last 40 percent represented a group that the company termed lapsed fans. These were fans who used to watch wrestling but haven’t done so in recent times, making them ripe to be coaxed back into the fold by the WWE.

The company has not released any additional details regarding its plans for the network, but experts have predicted that the first real advances could begin soon.

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The Forrester Wave: Subscription Billing Platforms, Q4 2015

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