WWE maintains a ‘very strong’ and ‘healthy’ relationship with the government of Saudi Arabia

Vince McMahon’s departure from TKO has raised questions on the potential impact on WWE’s relationship with the government in Saudi Arabia. However, according to comments made by TKO President Mark Shapiro during an investors call, the relationship between WWE and Saudi Arabia remains strong:

“Let’s remember, we have a strong and healthy relationship with the Kingdom, through WWE, and doing two annual events a year…those deals were primarily and highly tied to Vince McMahon. And there was a lot of speculation with Vince being gone, would that impact the relationship in a negative way? Would they be looking to get out of it? And I would say, probably, that Nick Khan in particular has developed and sustained, cultivated, nurtured a very very strong relationship in a handoff from Vince. And they have a lot of trust in each other. They have a lot of faith.

We’ve been delivering on those events. And potentially, we could look to do more events, but nothing is planned beyond those two events at this time. And we will continue to look at eventizing or festivalizing those WWE events more than we already do.”

According to a recent report, WWE’s business dealings with the Saudi government could potentially expand to include major events like the Royal Rumble or WrestleMania. TKO President Mark Shapiro indicated openness to enhancing the relationship with Saudi Arabia while maintaining the current business terms.

The relationship between WWE and Saudi Arabia is a significant business partnership that began in 2014. This relationship was formalized and expanded significantly in 2018 when WWE signed a 10-year strategic multiplatform partnership with the Saudi General Sports Authority. The deal is part of Saudi Arabia’s Vision 2030 initiative, which aims to diversify the country’s economy and reduce its dependence on oil. Under this agreement, WWE agreed to hold several major wrestling events in Saudi Arabia each year.

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