Press Release: WWE signs exclusive deal with Wal-Mart
WWE® Studios and Vivendi Entertainment Sign Exclusive Deal with Walmart
WWE® and Vivendi Entertainment announced today they are extending their relationship and as part of the deal, Walmart will be the exclusive retailer for WWE Studios’ films. Vivendi Entertainment will continue to be WWE’s North American retail and rental distribution partner.
This exclusive deal will cover WWE Studios’ next five theatrical releases and will run through 2012. The partnership gives Walmart, Sam’s Club and Walmart.com the exclusive right to sell DVD and Blu-ray versions of the films for the first 90 days of release. The Chaperone” starring WWE Superstar Paul “Triple H” Levesque, Ariel Winter (“Modern Family”) and Kevin Corrigan (“American Gangster”), which was just released, is the first film of the deal.
“We’re delighted to be extending our relationship with the WWE and offering fans the renowned entertainment which the company has come to represent,” stated Mitch Budin, Executive VP & General Manager of Vivendi Entertainment. “We look forward to continuing to help WWE and Walmart grow their brand presence in the home media market through such innovative deals.”
“WWE is thrilled to further its relationships with Vivendi and Walmart with this exclusive deal,” said Jim Connelly, SVP, Consumer Products, WWE. “With the combination of Walmart’s retail strength, Vivendi’s distribution rights, and WWE Studios’ family-friendly movies, consumers and families across America will have greater access to quality at-home entertainment.”
As part of the partnership, Walmart will be integrated into WWE’s multi-million dollar marketing campaign for each retail release across all WWE platforms. The partnership comes on the heels of the successful release plan and performance of “Legendary,” starring Patricia Clarkson, Danny Glover and WWE Superstar John Cena, which was exclusively available at Walmart and distributed through Vivendi last fall.
WWE, a publicly traded company (NYSE: WWE), is an integrated media organization and recognized leader in global entertainment. The company consists of a portfolio of businesses that create and deliver original content 52 weeks a year to a global audience. WWE is committed to family-friendly, PG content across all of its platforms including television programming, pay-per-view, digital media and publishing. WWE programming is broadcast in more than 145 countries and 30 languages and reaches more than 500 million homes worldwide. The company is headquartered in Stamford, Conn., with offices in New York, Los Angeles, London, Shanghai, Singapore and Tokyo.
Additional information on WWE (NYSE: WWE) can be found at wwe.com and corporate.wwe.com. For information on our global activities, go to http://www.wwe.com/worldwide/.
About Vivendi Entertainment
Vivendi Entertainment is a full service independent film, television, DVD and digital distribution company operating in the United States and Canada. Representing a vast range of genres including action, comedy, urban, family, Latino, sports and stand-up comedies, Vivendi Entertainment has become a favorite distribution partner for independent content providers. The company has built an extensive catalog of over 3,000 titles, and its customer-centric business model was founded on the principles of collaboration and financial transparency. The company provides sales, marketing, and distribution services to many of the home entertainment industry’s most prestigious brands including: World Wrestling Entertainment, The Weinstein Company, Shout! Factory, Classic Media, Big Idea, RHI, Code Black, National Geographic, Salient, Televisa, Sid and Marty Krofft Pictures and Nelvana. Vivendi Entertainment is a division of Universal Music Group Distribution, the award-winning sales, marketing and distribution arm of Universal Music Group, the world’s leading music company.
Trademarks: All WWE programming, talent names, images, likenesses, slogans, wrestling moves, trademarks, logos and copyrights are the exclusive property of WWE and its subsidiaries. All other trademarks, logos and copyrights are the property of their respective owners.
Forward-Looking Statements: This news release contains forward-looking statements pursuant to the safe harbor provisions of the Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995, which are subject to various risks and uncertainties. These risks and uncertainties include, without limitation, risks relating to maintaining and renewing key agreements, including television distribution agreements; the need for continually developing creative and entertaining programming; the continued importance of key performers and the services of Vincent McMahon; the conditions of the markets in which we compete and acceptance of the Company’s brands, media and merchandise within those markets; our exposure to bad debt risk; uncertainties relating to regulatory and litigation matters; risks resulting from the highly competitive nature of our markets; uncertainties associated with international markets; the importance of protecting our intellectual property and complying with the intellectual property rights of others; risks associated with producing and travelling to and from our large live events, both domestically and internationally; the risk of accidents or injuries during our physically demanding events; risks relating to our film business and any new business initiative which we may undertake; risks relating to the large number of shares of common stock controlled by members of the McMahon family and the possibility of the sale of their stock by the McMahons or the perception of the possibility of such sales; the relatively small public float of our stock; and other risks and factors set forth from time to time in Company filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission. Actual results could differ materially from those currently expected or anticipated. In addition, our dividend is significant and is dependent on a number of factors, including, among other things, our liquidity and historical and projected cash flow, strategic plan (including alternative uses of capital), our financial results and condition, contractual and legal restrictions on the payment of dividends, general economic and competitive conditions and such other factors as our Board of Directors may consider relevant, including a waiver by the McMahon family of a portion of the dividends which has now expired. Any new dividend waiver is subject to two things. The first is the receipt of the approval of the Internal Revenue Service, which has been obtained. The second is the agreement of members of the McMahon family. No determination has been made by the McMahon family to enter into a new waiver agreement.