Vince McMahon is planning to sell WWE stakes to the Public Investment Fund of Saudi Arabia
According to recent reports, WWE is in acquisition talks with the Public Investment Fund of Saudi Arabia (World Wrestling Entertainment, Inc.). WWE, headquartered in Connecticut, is a public company on the NASDAQ that promotes professional wrestling. Vince McMahon is the current executive chairman of the company and owns 38.6 percent of the stock. Vince McMahon is the most powerful person in the company because he owns 81.1 percent of the voting power.
Stephanie McMahon, the daughter of WWE founder Vince McMahon, announced a few days ago that she would be stepping down from her position as co-CEO. Following Vince McMahon’s retirement from WWE in July 2022, Stephanie McMahon was named chairwoman and co-CEO. Between 2013 and 2022, she served as WWE’s chief branding officer. Stephanie McMahon resigned as chairman of the company last Friday. Shortly after Stephanie McMahon’s departure, WWE’s board of directors reinstated Vince McMahon to the position of chairman.
Reports have surfaced that Vince McMahon intends to sell WWE shares to the Public Investment Fund of Saudi Arabia in order to delist the company from the stock market and turn it into a private company. In 2022, Vince McMahon resigned after WWE launched an investigation into allegations of sexual misconduct. The Wall Street Journal later reported that Vince had paid four women a total of nearly $12 million to keep quiet about sexual misconduct and extramarital affairs. The news that WWE is for sale doesn’t come as a surprise to wrestling fans because Vince McMahon has been discussing the possibility of selling the company ever since he returned to the entertainment wrestling business.
Since she left her position as co-CEO, WWE has been led by Nick Khan alone. Stephanie’s husband and famous wrestler Paul “Triple H” Levesque is also part of the top leadership team as a chief content officer.
“With Nick’s leadership and Paul “Triple H” Levesque as a chief content officer, I am confident WWE is in the perfect place to continue to provide unparalleled creative content and drive maximum value for shareholders,” Stephanie McMahon wrote in an official statement.
Newcastle United, a football club in England’s Premier League, and LIV Golf are just two of the many sports-related investments made by Saudi Arabia’s sovereign wealth fund. PIF purchased an 80% stake in the football team Newcastle United in 2021. Massive controversy arose in the United Kingdom over the acquisition deal, and the government ultimately intervened to block it.