Detailed Breakdown of WWE’s 2013 Second Quarter Financial Results

Nick Paglino

WWESource: The Wrestling Observer

– WWE generated a second quarter revenue of $152,282,000 but profits were only $5,182,000. Last year in the same quarter, revenue was $141,648,000 and profits were $11,943,000. The drop year-over-year was mainly due to adding a significant amount of expense whereas the increase in gross income can primarily be attributed to the added revenue from Raw's third hour as well as Saturday Morning Slam and Main Event.

– In regards to actual money, the company is down $22,022,000 for the first six months of 2013 as compared to being up $3,886,000 for the first six months of 2012. Even with Wrestlemania and all its related festivities which generated a tremendous amount of money – the most for any Wrestemania – profits still declined.

– Wrestlemania 29 this year generated $17.9 million in profit, second only to Wrestlemania 28 featuring Rock vs. John Cena that was the most profitable pro wrestling event in wrestling history at $19.1 million. The 2011 Wrestlemania 27 show had a total profit of $16.7 million in third place.

– WWE increased their staff count by approximately 10% – most of it in preparation for the launch of their network which is unlikely to go live until at least 2014.

– WWE's cash flow continues to decline. The company's cash assets are at a healthy $120 million with little in the way of debt, but that is still down from $150 million at the same time last year. In fact, only a few years ago, the cash assets totaled $300 million. This negative trend is expected to continue into next year until the new WWE network becomes profitable or new and more lucrative Raw and Smackdown deals are signed.

– WWE invested $5 million in "Tout" last summer and has received approximately $439,000 in revenue in the first year from that investment.

– WWE signed a deal on June 16 to purchase a new private jet for $27 million to replace the company's former aircraft. The plan is to put the old aircraft up for sale once the new one is ready to enter service.

– Breaking down revenue by region, North America revenue grew to 78.1%, highlighting the fact that WWE has become and more dependent on the North American market. A few years ago, the general consensus was that the international market is where the company would see its biggest growth but this has not come to fruition.

– Profits from live events (tickets and merchandise) increased to $19.1 milion for the quarter, making it the first time in a long time that this sector of the company carried the business. On the flip side, there was a huge decrease in profits from PPV and the overall web business (including WWE Shop) was down more than 50%.

– Royal Rumble drew 579,000 worldwide buys, Elimination Chamber drew 241,000 buys, Wrestlemania drew 1,039,000 buys, Extreme Rules drew 231,000 buys and Payback drew 186,000 buys. Royal Rumble is a particularly interesting PPV this year as it was the most successful Rumble since 2002 but not even as profitable as last year. The main reason for this is believed to be the cost of paying The Rock to be on the show – rumored at $1.5 million.

– In other side financial numbers, home video revenue fell to $7.1 million from $7.8 million last year. Magazine publishing revenue stayed even at $1.3 million which is considered a win in this day and age with the whole magazine industry in constant decline.

– WWE.com revenue rose to $6.1 million from $4.8 million last year but expenses also grew to $5.1 million from $3.3 million, again due to staff salaries.

– WWE Shop revenue decreased marginally to $3.02 million from $3.07 million and expenses went up as well to $2.7 million from $2.3 million.

– Overall staff expenses rose $2.1 million to $13.7 million, legal costs went up from $4.4 million to $5.1 milion and travel/entertainment expenses for staff rose from $1.0 million to $1.3 million. Finally, general advertising, marketing and promotion for the brand (not including specific shows) doubled to $2.0 million.

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