Thursday, February 8, 2007

WWE the Business

Jim Cramer is/was a financial advisor who's helped make many people rich by advising them on stocks and other investments. He has a hit show on CNBC called "Mad Money" where he rants and raves about the latest in stock picking. Here's a small piece reprinted from Cramer's MAD MONEY Blog back in October of 2006, regarding WWE as a business:

"World Wrestling's (WWE - commentary - Cramer's Take - Rating) not a bad idea here. Let me explain, because I know you would rather be in Apple or IBM, and I can't blame you.

The rap against WWE has to do with flat attendance and a tired product in a digital age. But WWE's taking its show on the road. And even though all anyone cares about is attendance in the U.S., which isn't going up, I think the international business could be huge. That kind of product does play overseas, and WWE's going into 70 markets.

Seven years after this company came public with considerable hoopla, it's now totally ignored, a flatliner with a good dividend that nobody cares about. Yet the company understands the stagnation and is doing something about it: movies, videos, international. I think it's paying you to wait and could be well worth it."

While it may be true that the WWE is becoming a tired product, what is also true is that Vince McMahon is constantly adding new pieces to his company, with the help of his business partner/wife Linda. For example, you have seen the recent movies produced by WWE, in the past several years WWE debuted its 24/7 online service to allow fans to watch matches for $1.49 or so. There are also tons of WWE merchandise including clothes, action figures, CD's and DVD's. All in all, as long as fans stay passionate and WWE keeps expanding its product, it should be a success for Vince.

I have heard speculation that Trump may appear on Monday Night RAW to form a new business partnership with WWE and Vince. This could be huge for the business. Then again, it could be to set up some sort of tag team match. Maybe Stone Cold will return. It could be many things, but when all's said and done, if Vince is running the show and adding new products, along with Trump pumping money into WWE arenas, it will be tough for fans to stay away from this entertainment. Vince could buy up WSX and even TNA if he decided he wanted to really monopolize. It goes to show the power of WWE and the money of the fans.


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