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is vince mcmahon selling WWE


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WWE stock closed at $12.60 on Thursday, amid hype that the company could be about to change hands. The speculation on vince mcmahon selling up led to about five times the usual amount of shares changing hands. The share price was up 72 cents for the day with a 6.06% rise.

According to stock industry website Seeking Alpha, the renewed speculation in WWE's sale was a knock on effect of 21st Century Fox's offer to acquire Time Warner. Although the WWE Network hasn't blown investors away, there remains optimism over its long term growth. Analysts are particularly bullish that WWE's initiative could draw interest from a company on the distribution side of the business.

The actual realism behind this speculation is limited. Vince McMahon is looking much older and the WWE's future is in question, but for the McMahon family to actually sell up is unfathomable. Vince is a businessman, he's about making money, he's near retirement – but would he actually sell up? He's a proud and powerful individual who knows wrestling like no other. He isn't likely to allow his company to turn into a modern day WCW, which was ran into the ground by corporate suits who knew nothing about wrestling.

The stock increase looks to be a Wall Street knee jerk reaction to Rupert Murdoch's bold $80 billion bid for Time Warner. That deal would see the 83 year old Murdoch acquire brands such as HBO, CNN, Warner Bros and various other media. Alongside Murdoch's 21st Century Fox operations, that deal would change the global media landscape forever, everyone would feel the effect. Murdoch is offering a 25% premium on Time Warner's share price, but the mega-deal has initially been rejected.

WWE has benefited from this air of excitement but the company remains an uncertain bet. The WWE Network is significantly short of the million subscribers target which they aimed to hit by December. That means they haven't even broke even on the Network and will in fact incur heavy losses for the start up. At the same time as they've killed off their pay per view business and failed to significantly increase TV rights. There have been staff cuts to mediate these losses and WWE are having to rethink strategy. However, in the long term, with technology and digital distribution growing, WWE do seem at the forefront of what will become the way we consume entertainment. It's an interesting time. The WWE as a company is changing at the same time as Vince McMahon's succession is becoming an ever increasing question.

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