WWE to expand brand presence in UK

MUMBAI: World Wrestling Entertainment (WWE) has major plans up its sleeve for the UK market. The organisation has said that it will extend its brand presence significantly in the UK over the next year.

This will form a part of a major global expansion initiative.

Building upon WWEs successful UK TV and Live Event presence, the WWE brand initiative will introduce UK-based television production, additional live events. In India WWE airs on Ten Sports.

In October the WWE will produce its two flagship programmes Raw and SmackDown! from the UK at the Manchester Evening News Arena. This marks the first time ever that the two shows will be produced outside the US.

As a lead up to the above mentioned televised events the WWE Superstars will perform in Belfast, Sheffield, Nottingham and London. This will form a part of a 'double header' WWE European tour. 

In April 2005, the WWE plans to return to the UK. It will once again produce Raw and SmackDown!.

On the marketing front in the UK this year there will be promotional programmes, licensed product launches, and on-the-ground appearances from the WWE superstars.

The campaigns involving WWE commercial partners will include promotions, competitions, in-store appearances and school visits. New product launches featuring the WWE Superstars are already in the planning stage. These are part of the UK-specific branding operation that will see a significant increase in presence for WWE licensees, retailers, promotional and media partners.

Elaborating further on the initiative WWE executive VP global media Shane McMahon said, "Our fans in the UK are incredible. Their loyalty, combined with the exceptional retail and licensing programmes we have in the UK, is a linchpin to our strategy to expand WWEs global presence.

"Our UK initiative is groundbreaking for us, our business partners, and our fans. It will develop the model we plan to use in other countries as we further implement our global expansion strategy."

In support of this initiative, WWE is undertaking a UK-specific ad campaign that will result in greater awareness for the brand. Licensees, retailers, promotional and media partners will all focus their WWE efforts around the same brand message. As a result of these synergies, there will be a significant increase in activities developed for their consumers.

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