WWE posts highest quarterly revenue in company history

By Kevin Zimmerman

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World Wrestling Entertainment Inc. (WWE) reported revenue for the second quarter of $199.0 million, up from the $150.2 million the company reported in the second quarter of 2015 and the highest quarterly revenue in the Stamford company’s history.

Net income of $0.8 million or $0.1 per share for the second quarter was down when compared to second quarter 2015’s $5.1 million or $0.07 per share.

WWE’s annual WrestleMania event was held April 3, and was reflected in second quarter 2016 results, while the comparable prior year event occurred on March 29, 2015 and was included as part of first quarter 2015 results.

“We achieved a 25 percent increase in average paid subscribers to WWE Network and generated earnings that were in line with our guidance,” remarked WWE chief strategy and financial officer George Barrios. “Over the past 12 months we delivered record revenue of $703 million. Additionally, for the first half of 2016, we delivered revenue growth of 13 percent from the prior year period and our digital video views increased by more than 100 percent to nearly 8 billion and our social media engagements increased 39 percent to 570 million.”

For the third quarter 2016, WWE projects average paid subscribers to WWE Network of 1.49 million, representing a year-over-year increase of approximately 27 percent. The third quarter subscriber forecast represents a sequential decline of 2 percent from the second quarter of 2016, which compares to the 4 percent decline from the second to the third quarter 2015.

The company also estimated third quarter 2016 adjusted operating income before depreciation and amortization (OIBDA) of approximately $24 million to $28 million, representing an expected year-over-year increase from $23.4 million in the third quarter 2015 primarily due to the increased monetization of its video content and the continued strong performance of its Live Events business.

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