The World Wrestling Entertainment is launching its own network and bringing muscles to the web. On Feb. 24th, the sports and entertainment company will debut their new channel for $9.99/month. It will be one of those 24 hour networks available to smartphones, iPads and other tablets including video game consoles.
Is wrestling and TV parting ways? No, not exactly. WWE is expanding beyond the family room and sports-bar venues and into the hands of users, but will still be on pay per view and its ever popular non-pay programs ‘Raw’ and ‘Smackdown.’ The Monday Night Raw and Friday Night Smackdown shows grab 6.9 million total viewers, Nielsen reports. Wrestlemania, a special, which has customers paying $50-70 per night, will be able to be seen on your smartphone, tablet or gaming console.
The company is counting on the young male customer to purchase this platform. For under ten bucks a month, they will be able to view a library, which alone consists of six decades worth of material. Wrestlemania, the Superbowl of wrestling will be included. Specials, classic matches and original programming will be available with 1500 hours when it goes live.
The World Wrestling Entertainment Company has been putting this together for four years and according to Michelle Wilson, chief of marketing, digital offerings like this is the future, especially for the passionate fans.
‘Popular streaming platforms’ seem to be emerging and availability of these on multiple sites for the viewer on the go is the trend. The World Wrestling Entertainment Network and its launch of muscles to the web will stream 24/7 and be on Xbox 1 and PlayStation 4. All you need to do is start a subscription, similar to Netflix. This program will be free of commercials. It will not be available for Nintendo, but may come at a later date. For the wrestling fans, they receive something less costly than the one time pay per view events, possibly saving money for the wallets of young men.
Celeste Bonin, known as Kaitlyn in WWE, will not be coming to live-stream, as she announced her departure from the Sports-Entertainment World. From Houston, Texas she rose up against Eve Torres for a Divas title in 2012 and 2013. She worked her title this summer but in the end lost to AJLee. Since August, she hasn’t been seen except for matches with multi Divas as the company has showcased its ‘Total Divas’ a hit reality show.
Her twitter concession today had 1,549 retweets and 810 favorites. Later another tweet about reacting(tears) to all the messages, received almost 500 retweets and 630 favorites. Possibly her departure will open up more doors in other endeavors, as she had not really realized her potential. She was a former soccer player, fitness guru and body builder until she joined the WWE. She hints at big things for 2014.
This new channel will break even, they predict, when it hits a million subscribers and they expect to do that by the end of the year. The goal is 2-4 million subscribers with an income of $150 million.
Bypassing cable is more expensive for the company, but not sharing revenue is the uptick. The programming will consist of five hours of original content, 15 hours of content new to the channel and then shows from the archives. All that to be repeated maybe eight times a day.
The bottom line is an increase in viewership from the US and other countries around the globe. The World Wrestling Entertainment launches muscles to the web with its ringside dramas of superstar wrestlers on Feb. 24th.
By Kim Troike