Vince McMahon hosted a conference call pertaining to the third quarter financial report that WWE released on November 1, 2012. The following are the highlights of the call. You must refresh the page for the latest updates.
-Michael Weitz of WWE Investor Relations opened the call and noted that he was joined by Vince McMahon and WWE CFO George Barrios. Weitz noted that he hoped the callers on the East Coast were able to weather the storm. turned the call over to Vince.
-Vince said the quarter was where they expected to be, perhaps better. He noted that it was down from last year. He noted that their video game business down slightly only because they did not release a second title as they did last year.
-Vince said social media "is through the roof and will continue to be for quite some time."
-Vince said television ratings are good. He said they remain the No. 1 show on USA Network and Syfy. Vince said the third hour of Raw is doing "extremely well." He also touted the debuts of WWE Saturday Morning Slam and WWE Main Event. He also noted they launch of WWE programming on Hulu Plus, and discussed the deals to make the Scooby Doo movie and the ABC Family Christmas special.
-"The mobile app is extraordinary," Vince said. He noted that it will be interactive over the next couple of weeks in ways that no television show has ever been. "This is going to be revolutionary in the amount and the way we do it."
-Vince said the WWE Network will be a premium subscription model. He said it will be the most interactive network in the world. He said there is movement on the network, then turned over the call to Barrios.
-Barrios ran through the financial report and spoke about the new television deals and the increased number of television hours. He said it will not prevent them from launching a television network. He also sang the praises of their social media success by boasting about their Facebook "likes" count and Twitter followers.
-Revenue from ticket sales were flat compared to the prior year quarter. Revenue in North America was up, and the company targeted areas that were doing better economically.
-Buys for WrestleMania were eight percent above the previous year, and the overall pay-per-view sales of the nine events this year were up nine percent compared to the same events in 2011.
-Television revenue was flat. Barrios attributed this to having fewer episodes of Smackdown within the quarter compared to last year, and ad rates.
-Barrios noted that the extra hour of Raw is performing better than NCIS reruns did for USA Network.
-The No Holds Barred movie re-release is on pace to turn a $300,000 profit.
-You can read the full financial report at Corporate.wwe.com/documents/Q3WWE2012Presentation-FINAL11.01.12.pdf.
-Barrios noted the results of the fan base survey. He noted that just over 50 percent of the U.S. households have an affinity for WWE. Once Barrios finished running through the financial report, they opened up the phone lines.
-The first caller noted that we're not getting a timeline on the network and asked about the network cannibalizing pay-per-view. Vince said the network will not do that. He said they have models that include pay-per-views and models that do not include pay-per-views. The caller asked if one of those models would give network subscribers pay-per-view. "It depends," Vince responded.
-Vince noted that the Smackdown contract "comes up soon." He noted that is the first TV deal to negotiate.
-Vince was asked about content for the network. He noted that different types of fans, including hardcore fans, want different things. He said they don't want to give away too much because it could have an affect on their negotiations.
-Vince was asked about the increased attendance. He attributed it to the better quality of the product. He was asked how much he expects it to increase over time. Vince said he didn't want to speculate, "but it will be good."
-A caller asked about what type of increases they expect to see from their new television deals and Hulu Plus. Barrios said it was sensitive material because the partners may not want that information available. He said they feel good about the creative and the economics of the new shows.
-The caller pointed to the fan survey. He asked whether they needed to capture the full audience to make the network successful. Vince said they do not. He said their model makes a considerable amount of revenue. He said the chart tells them that the lapsed fans may have interest. He said it's an older audience and felt there could be content for those fans. He said they could reach a large percentage of them, but it's not based on the lapsed fan.
-The caller asked how much WWE would require to actually launch the network. Barrios said they are at 80 to 90 percent of the infrastructure they need. He seemed to indicate that the bigger expense could be the marketing push the network will require.
-This concluded the conference call.
WWE News: 11/1 Vince McMahon conference call - WWE Network, third quarter financial report
Nov 1, 2012 - 10:00 AM
Nov 1, 2012 - 10:00 AM
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