WWE holds employee meeting on Vince McMahon’s return to the Board
WWE officials held their “all hands on deck” meeting at company HQ this afternoon, but this was not a talent meeting. The meeting was held via call.
The meeting was held to address Vince McMahon’s return to the WWE Board of Directors, and his plans to pursue a sale of the company. The meeting was originally scheduled to begin at 3:30pm ET, but it didn’t start until 3:45pm ET, and ran for around 10 minutes. WWE Chairwoman & Co-CEO Stephanie McMahon, Co-CEO Nick Khan, and President & CFO Frank A. Riddick III, led the call.
It was announced that McMahon is officially back on the Board of Directors, but it was reiterated that there will be no changes to management or their responsibilities at this time, according to PWInsider. Fightful Select adds that it was stressed to employees that the day-to-day operations across the company are not changing.
It was also pushed that the move with Vince was a big positive and was made to give the company everything they needed to make the most of their future rights revenue sales, such as the new TV deals for RAW and SmackDown, among others, as well as to gauge the market for a potential sale of the company with the idea that with McMahon back, the entire company would be on the same page in maximizing WWE’s potential leading into the future.
The idea is that they would be looking at potential sale offers ahead of any rights fees negotiations, in case that would be a greater benefit, such as it being more lucrative financially, instead of another round of just selling TV rights. However, it was also greatly emphasized that a sale of th company may not happen and it should not be assumed a sale will happen. The final say in all of this would go to McMahon as he is the controlling shareholder.
It was also mentioned that a “possible avenue” for the company could be for them to be taken private again if it was “the best outcome for shareholders.” This was mentioned among potential strategic options, not that it was something they will be doing for sure.
The call was described as “very much a rah-rah meeting to try and raise the spirits of the troops,” but officials did not take questions from employees.
On a related note, we noted before that two members of the WWE Board of Directors resigned today – Ignace Lahoud and Man Jit Singh, and that Singh’s resignation was notable as he was the lead investigator in the Board’s recent investigation of the McMahon allegations. Word now is that Singh’s resignation was described by a WWE source as the “least shocking move” of the day as Singh, a former Sony executive, was said to have been very “by the books” and by all indications, he strongly reacted to all of the McMahon allegations that came out last summer, pushing for WWE to do their due diligence and investigate.
WWE’s SEC filing from earlier today noted how three members of the Board were removed to make room for McMahon, George Barrios, and Michelle Wilson. One of the three, Jeffrey R. Speed, was also a part of the investigation done last year.
There’s been a lot of speculation on McMahon possibly being at tonight’s SmackDown from Memphis, but word is that he will not be there. There were rumors among employees that Vince was at WWE HQ in Stamford earlier today, but it’s since been confirmed that he was not there. There have been rumors that Vince was seen at the WWE HQ gym for months, but no one would ever confirm those rumors.