WWE RAW is one of the flagship shows of the Stamford-based promotion. The show has been on the air for 30 years and has produced several iconic moments in the company’s history.
For several years, USA Network was the home of WWE RAW but that is set to change in 2025. WWE recently announced that starting next year, WWE RAW will be available to Netflix subscribers. This announcement came as a surprise to many people.
The partnership between the streaming giant and WWE could be beneficial to both parties as the latter could make use of Netflix’s production house to create more original content.
Speaking on the company’s quarterly earnings call, Netflix CEO Ted Sarandos commented on the deal expressing his excitement to bring live programming to the platform every week.
“We are thrilled to bring WWE live programming to our members around the world. WWE Raw is sports entertainment, which is right in the sweet spot of our sports business, which is the drama of sport. Think of this as 52 weeks of live programming every week, every year. It feeds our desire to expand our live event programming. Most importantly, fans love it. For decades, WWE has grown this multi-generational fanbase that we believe we can serve and we can grow. We believe WWE has been historically under distributed outside of North America, and this is a global deal. We can help them, and they can help us build that fandom around the world. This should also add some fuel to our new and growing ad business,” he said.
Ted Sarandos continued to say that the new deal fits into their $17 billion programming spending. He also stated that there is more opportunity to grow this on a global scale.
“Expanding the live event programming is something we’ve talked about for a while and this has been in the works. This fits inside our $17 billion programming spending. In terms of building on it, you should think of Formula One, this is almost the inverse of Formula One, which is a very big and passionate US fanbase and a lot of room to grow outside of the US. We can build that, as we have with Formula One and other sports, through our shoulder programming like Drive to Survive, Full Swing, Break Point, and Quarterbacks. The events itself are the storytelling in WWE. This is a proven formula for us and we’re excited to jump into. This is sports entertainment, very close to our core, the deal is long-term, we’re super excited about it”
It will be interesting to see if this deal will lead to more original WWE-related content on the streaming platform.
What do you make of WWE’s deal with Netflix? Do you think it is a good idea? Sound off in the comments section.