World Wrestling Entertainment, Inc., or WWE, has been through a great deal of change over the past year. In July, former CEO Vince McMahon retired amid allegations of sexual misconduct. Stephanie McMahon was the co-CEO in recent months, but announced her resignation on Jan. 10, 2023. Now a sale may be happening. So, who owns WWE?
Hours after Stephanie McMahon resigned as co-CEO following her father's return from retirement, another big piece of WWE news surfaced. Though unconfirmed, the Saudi Arabia Public Investment Fund may be WWE's new owner. Here's an update on all that's happened in WWE world and who owns it today.
Who bought WWE?
WWE has faced quite a bit of turmoil recently, especially since the July 2022 allegations that led to Vince McMahon's retirement from the top position at the company. His daughter Stephanie was chairwoman of WWE and the co-CEO along with Nick Khan, but on Jan. 10, she announced she was stepping down, leaving Khan as the sole CEO.
As ESPN reported, Stephanie's resignation comes just days after Vince McMahon came out of retirement to rejoin the WWE's board. McMahon said he was returning to "fully capitalize" on WWE's upcoming media rights negotiations. The Wall Street Journal also reported that McMahon was returning to pursue a possible sale of the company.
WWE's sale to the Saudi Investment Fund is currently just speculation.
DraftKings and other outlets have reported that WWE may be sold to the Saudi Arabia Public Investment Fund. However, it seems that no deal has been made officially. Steven Muehlhausen of DAZN originally reported late on Jan. 10 that the Saudi Fund was buying WWE.
DraftKings reported early on Jan. 11 that journalist Ariel Helwani emphasized the deal wasn't in place yet. Also, the original tweet announcing the WWE's sale has since been deleted.
Did Saudi Arabia buy WWE?
Although there was a bit of a media frenzy late on Jan. 10 indicating a sale to the Saudi Arabia Public Investment Fund was likely, newer reports indicate that it's so far only a rumor. TMZ sources note that Saudi Arabia's fund didn't buy the wrestling entertainment company.
Bleacher Report also denies the reports that WWE has been sold, although there's still a possibility of it happening. Fans of WWE have speculated since the allegations surfaced against McMahon that he might try to orchestrate a sale that would allow him to remain at the WWE's helm.
WWE leadership has changed recently.
The leadership at WWE has shifted quite a bit in recent months. Of course, McMahon's departure from the CEO position last July was a major move. Stephanie stepped up to co-lead the company with Khan. Her husband, Paul 'Triple H' Levesque, serves as chief content officer.
Stephanie stated on her social media accounts: "WWE is in such a strong position that I have decided to return to my leave and take it one step further with my official resignation. I look forward to cheering on WWE from the other side of the business, where I started when I was a little kid, as a pure fan."
McMahon announced his pride in Stephanie's work as CEO and said he was looking forward to collaborating with sole CEO Nick Khan and the board to "maximize value for all WWE shareholders." WWE is publicly traded on the New York Stock Exchange with the appropriate ticker symbol "WWE."
At the moment, although the Saudi Arabia Public Investment Fund may be a bidder in a potential sale of WWE, nothing has been signed yet. WWE would possibly need to consult with shareholders about such a sale.