WWE held their annual shareholders meeting on Friday with several WWE execs including Vince McMahon addressing the WWE shareholders. Here are some highlights:
– Vince opened the meeting. He talked about people holding WrestleMania parties and that this increases the number of viewers but hurts overall buys. He talked about how this relates to pay-per-view price increases.
– A shareholder mentioned the idea of having a separate roster for the European market. Vince said it would be costly to come up with another roster and production crew. Then there would be the chance that European fans would still want the regular WWE product. Vince said in 10 years it might be possible they have to do something like that since there are only so many dates the WWE Superstars can work.
– Stephanie McMahon, looking very pregnant, appeared with marketing VP Michelle Wilson. Wilson announced a marketing campaign with 7-11 stores and a campaign with Burger King that will feature Triple H, John Cena and Undertaker toys.
– Stephanie put over the RAW guest host concept. Stephanie noted that WWE is bigger than late night TV shows and Saturday Night Live. She called WWE “what’s cool to do in Hollywood right now.”
– Stephanie talked about NXT and said it’s exciting to see how the future WWE stars perform with the spotlight on them.
– Vince said they are currently looking for distribution for the WWE network. Vince said the network will give them a chance to do more programming and not just in-ring programming. Vince stressed that the network programming won’t be just in-ring shows and that they would compliment what they are doing on the current TV shows. He also said the network would give them leverage when negotiating with other TV networks for their current shows.
– A shareholder said that WWE Films h as been a costly experiment. Vince said only one movie h as failed while the others have been profitable. Vince said they may not be hitting home runs with the movies but they are hitting good doubles and singles.
– Vince said it’s important to reinvent yourself and talked about how the WWE audience always demands a new and improved product when a shareholder asked about the current focus on younger talent in the company. Vince said that Stephanie, John Laurinaitis and Kevin Dunn have done an excellent job with NXT. Vince said they are currently talking to distributors about NXT staying on SyFy or moving it.
– Vince said the pre-emptions with Friday Night SmackDown on MyNetworkTV were a major problem. Vince said one of the advantages of having SmackDown on SyFy is that they can do a better job of directly promoting the shows since SyFy is owned by Universal, which also owns USA Network.