Vince McMahon Signs Two-Year Contract with WWE Amid Suitors
Long-time Chairman returns with a base salary of $1.2m and bonus target of 175%, plus intellectual property rights.
World Wrestling Entertainment’s (WWE) chairman, Vince McMahon, has signed a new two-year employment contract that kicked off in January when he returned to the company, according to a recent securities filing. Following McMahon’s return, WWE has been in active negotiations with potential buyers. The new contracts give McMahon a base salary of $1.2 million per annum, with a 175% incentive bonus target. The leader also stands to earn a $2.4 million payout and doubled bonus ahead of the film or sale of the company.
CEO Confirms Robust Sale Process
The WWE CEO, Nick Khan, recently confirmed to CNBC that the sale process has been busy, with several interested bidders for the entertainment company. However, earlier in the week, CNBC’s David Faber revealed that the process has been a “hot and heavy” affair. McMahon initially stepped away from his role as CEO under the cloud of alleged sexual misconduct from several ex-female employees. He later announced his retirement, which led to his daughter Stephanie McMahon being named the new co-CEO of WWE, a family business for the McMahons. She resigned recently after her father’s return to the company in January.
Future Involvement of McMahon
With the potential involvement of McMahon, who remains WWE’s controlling shareholder, there has been some speculation regarding what role he may play following a successful sale. Last month, Khan told CNBC that McMahon would be open to stepping down from his position “if it’s the right deal.” However, some buyers in the initial stages of discussions have insisted on McMahon’s continued participation, which has become a sticking point in these negotiations. Nevertheless, Khan reaffirmed McMahon’s position to the market, stating that he made it clear to them that he would not be included in any deals moving forward.
McMahon’s Bonus and Intellectual Property Rights
McMahon’s contract gives him the rights to his “life story” and related intellectual property. McMahon purchased the company from his father in 1982 and managed it before retiring in 2022. He has even taken the stage himself on several occasions. Thus, the new contract agreement grants him the right to retell his WWE story while protecting him from lawsuits or business retribution.
Amid the intensified sale talks, WWE’s stock has gone up by approximately 34% year-to-date, outpacing the market’s returns.