WWE seeks to expand business with intl broadcasters

MUMBAI: World Wrestling Entertainment (WWE) has unveiled a major initiative intended to utilise its 75,000-hour programming library. The organisation is looking to build the business with its cable, satellite and other worldwide television partners.

In India WWE action airs on Ten Sports.

The first step is the launch of WWE 24/7. This is a subscription video-on-demand service that will feature pay-per-view, cable and syndicated broadcast content, best-selling home videos, new original productions and proprietary broadband, from the WWE and other acquired US wrestling brands. A recently launched in-house business development unit, WWE Enterprises, will work directly with MSOs, affiliates and satellite providers to create, customise and cross-promote these new revenue-generating services.

WWE chairman Vince McMahon was quoted in a company release saying, "WWE is ready to move even more aggressively into the digital age by providing new services that will fit with the active lifestyles of our fans and meet their demand for new and innovative content. Our fans want more WWE and classic sports entertainment programming, and we have demonstrated our track record of providing content of the highest quality and value. I am confident we can move into this new distribution platform for television as successfully as we have for syndication, cable, broadcast and PPV."

WWE 24/7 has been positioned as 'Wrestling Any Time, All the Time'. The release adds that over the past three years, WWE has aggregated its content by strategically acquiring the libraries of other national and regional promoters, including the now defunct WCW, ECW and AWA. This has resulted in an archive of more than 75,000 hours of programming content, 25,000 of which was previously aired or released as finished product.

WWE 24/7 will make available approximately 20 hours of content per month. Customised broadband content will be created for MSOs websites and other distributors promoting the new offering. WWE also anticipates providing content on a free-on-demand promotional basis to spur the trial period and help its partners promote these new services. In addition, library content will be made available selectively for existing television partners worldwide.

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