-Advertisement-
-Advertisement-

Executives from Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) and World Wrestling Entertainment (WWE) have chosen the name TKO for their newly merged publicly traded company as a nod to their expertise in fighting, signifying a broader vision beyond combat sports ownership.

-Advertisement-

TKO commenced trading on the New York Stock Exchange, marking the culmination of a merger between two live-entertainment giants announced in April. Endeavor Group Holdings, owning 51% and encompassing assets like UFC and talent agency WME, partnered with WWE shareholders, who own the remaining 49%. Shares experienced a 2.8% increase in midday trading.

-Advertisement-

In the initial 18 months, TKO’s focus is on integrating UFC and WWE, with plans to collaborate for international media rights and consolidate production efforts and back-office operations. Following this phase, TKO intends to pursue acquisitions to expand globally.

Get Instantly Update By:  Joining Our Whatapps and Telegram Channel 

 

 

Mark Shapiro, TKO’s president and COO, stated, “We will ultimately be in the marketplace looking for other sports properties that we can bolt onto the flywheel enhanced by Endeavor,” highlighting a strong desire for international growth.

Endeavor, also owning Professional Bull Riders and tennis tournaments, utilizes its “flywheel” to represent athletes, negotiate media rights, and enhance live events. Shapiro envisions introducing direct-to-consumer options with TKO.

While WWE currently streams on NBCUniversal’s Peacock, TKO anticipates new media deals for WWE’s “Raw” and “SmackDown” on traditional pay TV. Vince McMahon is the executive chairman, with Ari Emanuel as the CEO, emphasizing Emanuel’s role as the primary leader. McMahon’s reputation, coupled with recent legal issues, is acknowledged, and Shapiro emphasizes Emanuel’s ability to lead alongside a sports league co-founder with a strong personality.

“Ari Emanuel is running the company,” said Shapiro. “Vince will play a role. He’s got experience and influence. But he understands the role of CEO is Ari’s. This is not a shared position.”

-Advertisement-