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The World Wrestling Entertainment shares have soared 17% since the Hollywood Reporter broke a story on Thursday that $WWE is talking to other networks about its iconic "Smackdown" television franchise and completing a new deal for "Raw" at three times the value.

WWE Smackdown v Raw


"WWE's Smackdown is being shopped to various networks after NBCUniversal, whose USA Network airs the highly rated pro wrestling matches, declined to re-up its deal," the report said.

"NBCU is said to be focusing on renewing its deal for WWE's other other iconic wrestling franchise, "Raw" with that deal expected to close at as much as three times its current value."

World Wrestling Entertainment Inc NYSE:$WWE is trading Friday at $51.42 ▲ 1.11 or 2.21% after rising 15% Thursday.

  • The $WWE current P/E is 85.47 and is trading at its 52 week high at $51.42 from a 52 week low of $19.43

NBCU bought the  rights to Smackdown, which is the second longest-running weekly episodic program in U.S. TV history in 2010. At the time, the company was said to have paid $30 million for rights to the franchise. 

WWE Smackdown

Smackdown started airing live in May 2016, increasing the value for advertising during the wrestling show the reporter said. At the time, USA aired five hours of live WWE programming a week; WWE programming currently airs two nights a week on USA. (Raw aired solo on USA from 2005 to 2016.)

Sports broadcast assets continue to soar given their value to a broadcaster. We have seen record prices in the NFL, NBA, MLB, NHL, EPL, NRL and AFL to name a few of the most popular sports leagues around the world. Smackdown, which still boasts the sixth biggest audience among cable originals (including news programming),

Recent TV Deals

  • Fox five-year, $550 million annual deal for rights to the NFL's Thursday Night Football
  • In  2012, Major League Baseball, Fox Sports Media Group and Turner Broadcasting entered into an eight-year national media rights deal for postseason games said to be worth $12.4 billion.
  • Disney and ESPN earlier this month signed their first-ever multiyear deal for digital rights to live UFC Fight Night events in a pact worth $750 million ($150 million annually) starting in January. Those matches will be broadcast on ESPN+, the sports network's OTT platform. 
  • Channel Nine and Fox Sports inked a $2 billion rights for the NRL in Australia last year.

Source: The HollyWood Reporter

From The TradersCommunity Research Desk

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