NBCUniversal’s Peacock will soon be the only place to watch WWE Network in the US
WWE and NBCU have entered into a multi-year agreement granting Peacock exclusive broadcast rights to WWE Network for US viewers. Existing US subscribers of the exaggerated wrestling entertainment service (around 1.1 million in total) will be migrated to Peacock Premium, where they will continue to have access to WWE Network but pay 50% less per month while getting full access. to the Peacock Premium level version with advertisements.
Peacock will launch WWE Network on March 18, 2021, when Peacock begins rolling out more than 17,000 hours of new, original and library programming from WWE Network (both on-demand and on a new 24-hour channel).
The NBCU streamer will have all of WWE’s live events – at no additional cost – including WrestleMania and SummerSlam, with Fastlane the first event to air on Peacock on Sunday March 21 (WWE fans would prefer to order events via payment at the traditional .view map will always have this option.)
WWE Network will be available on Peacock Premium (which includes ads) for $ 4.99 per month, half the current WWE Network price of $ 9.99 / month. The Peacock Premium Plus ad-free plan, which costs $ 9.99 / month, will also include WWE Network.
The companies plan to share details on how existing WWE Network subscribers in the United States will be switched to Peacock (for example, whether they will automatically subscribe to Peacock) in the coming weeks. Nothing will change for WWE Network subscribers outside the United States
Financial terms of the Peacock-WWE Network pact were not disclosed. “We are satisfied with the financial aspects. Otherwise, we wouldn’t have made the deal, ”said Nick Khan, president and chief revenue officer of WWE, who joined the company last August from CAA. “To have WrestleMania in particular – which is our Super Bowl – available [for no extra cost] on Peacock is quite different from the other models you see.
For Peacock, the WWE Network is “a transformative addition,” said Rick Cordella, EVP and Peacock Revenue Director. “We have a lot of data that shows live events and sports lead to a lot of user acquisitions,” he said. “The bet is that there is a much larger total audience available [for WWE programming] than on the WWE Network today. “
NBCU and WWE have been partners for nearly 30 years, starting in 1993 with “Monday Night Raw” in the United States. “WWE has always drawn on the cultural zeitgeist with spectacular live events and larger-than-life characters, and we are thrilled to be the exclusive home of WWE Network and its millions of fans across the country,” said Cordella.
In the third quarter of 2020, WWE Network had an average of 1.6 million paying subscribers, down about 60,000 from the previous quarter, but a 6% increase year-over-year – marking the first annual growth of the service since the first quarter of 2019. The entertainment company initially launched WWE Network in February 2014, when it ended its traditional pay-per-view business.
Beginning in 2022, WWE will produce “one signature documentary per year” for the WWE Network on Peacock. Also available on WWE Network, there are approximately 100 hours of original series such as “Steve Austin’s Broken Skull Sessions”, “Undertaker: The Last Ride” and the recently premiered “WWE Icons”; in-ring shows like NXT, NXT UK and WWE 205 Live, as well as reruns of “Raw” and “SmackDown”; WWE Network Archives, including all WWE, WCW, and ECW pay-per-view events in history; and documentaries including “WWE 24”, “WWE Untold” and “WWE 365”.
Peacock, which NBCU launched nationwide in July 2020, attracted nearly 22 million user “subscriptions” in its first six months of full-scale release, according to the company. Eligible Comcast Xfinity X1 and Flex and Cox’s Contour customers – a total of approximately 24 million households – get Peacock Premium included at no additional cost.
Peacock’s line of content includes a roster of originals, TV show libraries – including all episodes from “The Office” and “Yellowstone” – and films from Universal Pictures, Focus Features, DreamWorks Animation, Illumination and other studios. In addition, the OTT service provides news, sports, parties, in Spanish and reality through NBCUniversal.
Peacock Premium now offers more than 47,000 hours of programming. NBCU also offers a free, ad-supported version of Peacock with a bucket of reduced content.
Pictured Above: WWE Superstar Drew McIntyre at WrestleMania 36