2014 hasn’t been the greatest financial year for WWE. After re-upping its television deal with NBC Universal, investors promptly freaked out. WWE’s stock took a huge hit, costing Vince McMahon in the neighborhood of $350 million and his billionaire status. With the newly launched WWE Network not exactly booming, many have speculated what WWE will do to stop the financial bleeding.
According to a report from Wrestlezone, budget cuts are definitely part of the plan.
WWE is apparently looking to cut about $20 million from its 2014 budget. Cuts will include, and have already started to include reducing the amount of bells and whistles during superstar entrances. Fandango’s entrance has been toned down recently to no longer include his golden curtain, while Bad News Barrett will no longer be appearing high atop his scissor lift.
It’s being said that the truck that hauls extra entrance props has already been taken off the road, which will reportedly save the company about $250,000 this year.
While some might take this as a bad sign, there are still some positives to take away.
It’s good to see WWE realizing the seriousness of the situation that it’s in. Getting more people to subscribe to the Network is the company’s top priority at this point — not putting on glamorous entrances for every superstar. The wrestling business has gotten along just fine up until recent years with Plain Jane entrances.
Cutting out some of the bells and whistles will help to get WWE back to basics, something that’s been needed for years. The less WWE looks like an entertainment company and more like a pro wrestling company — the better.
It’s a shame that 11 employees were shown the door last week as well, but just because WWE is a high profile company, it doesn’t mean it’s immune to trimming unnecessary fat.
Small changes like the ones fans are seeing now are long overdue. There’s nothing wrong with dialing back some of the glamour to save a few bucks in a crucial financial year.