Tuesday, November 28

Ari Emanuel Attributes TKO Stock Drop to Vince McMahon’s Unique Stock Option


  • Ari Emanuel discusses the market factors impacting TKO Group’s stock plummet, including Saudi Arabia’s investment in PFL and NBCU’s rumored exit from RAW’s rights.
  • Emanuel highlights WWE’s value and loyal fan base, but attributes the stock price fall to the impact of the RAW package, Saudi Arabia’s investment, and Vince McMahon’s unconventional stock option.
  • Reports suggest that Endeavor favors Triple H over Vince McMahon, with the former now leading creative direction and likely due to confidence in Triple H and lack of confidence in Vince’s involvement. Endeavor aims to avoid panic from McMahon selling his stocks.

Ari Emanuel, CEO of Endeavor and TKO, shed light on the recent TKO Group stock plummet while speaking at Bloomberg’s Screentime conference. Emanuel, now steering the ship for TKO Group, delved into the complex factors influencing the market, including Saudi Arabia’s investment in the PFL, NBCU’s rumored exit from the running for RAW’s rights, and the enigmatic presence of Vince McMahon, the iconic figure behind WWE. When it came to McMahon, Emanuel specifically cited Vince’s unconventional stock option as a stock price issue.

Emanuel talked up the value of WWE and what they have available in terms of rights deals. He mentioned that the product, like the UFC, is unique in that it doesn’t have a season and the fans are loyal to the core, willing to follow the brand wherever it goes. That said, while addressing the stock price fall — which previously peaked at nearly $116, but is currently trading at $80 a share — he cited three factors. Firstly, the value of the RAW package impacted investor confidence, despite expectations of a 40 percent increase. Secondly, the involvement of Saudi Arabia’s investment in the Professional Fighters League (PFL) created ripples, stirring uncertainties in the market. Thirdly, and perhaps most significantly, was the unconventional stock option held by Vince McMahon. At 78 years old, McMahon’s ability to sell his stocks at any point raised concerns among investors, leading to further market volatility.

Vince McMahon Raw April 3, 2017 Cropped

There have been other reports that Endeavor is preferential to Triple H over Vince. Recently, PWInsider reported a positive shift in the backstage atmosphere of WWE, mostly because Triple H, has been seemingly “knighted” by Endeavor as the person to call the shots. He is now spearheading the creative direction, being responsible for ‘99.9% of the creative’ moving forward. Some of this likely has to do with the confidence Endeavor has in Triple H. It could also have to do with a lack of confidence in Vince.

RELATED: What Endeavor’s Trust In Triple H Means For Vince McMahon In WWE

Will Vince Eventually Be A Silent Stock Owner?

At this point, the only real value McMahon seems to have is the number of shares he holds and what the threat of dumping them might mean. Endeavor wants to avoid the panic of that happening, but otherwise, it’s as though they really don’t want him involved in anything company-related. It’s an interesting dynamic that is sure to be a topic of conversation unless Vince is happy enough to just hold his stock options and let everyone else run the show.

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