Axios Highlights WWE Business Success Following Vince McMahon's Exit

For most companies, the departure of a CEO would usually result in a wave of uncertainty from investors, and can often even result in the stock price tanking. However, that simply hasn't been the case for WWE in 2022. The company has performed exceedingly well in the aftermath of longtime CEO Vince McMahon's departure over the summer, and news website Axios has now declared WWE "2022's media winner."

Even leaving McMahon's departure out of the equation, WWE is an anomaly among media companies this year. Axios reports that WWE may be the only publicly-traded major media company that hasn't seen a massive drop in its stock prices over the course of 2022. Instead, WWE is trading at nearly a 60% increase compared to the beginning of the year. The report furthers recent speculation that WWE may be a prime target for an acquisition over the next several years, especially after the retirement of McMahon, who was long seen as a massive obstacle to any potential sale.

McMahon was forced to step down as CEO and head of WWE creative when reports emerged that he hid a number of massive payouts to private parties regarding sexual affairs and misconduct. In the aftermath of McMahon's departure, his daughter Stephanie McMahon was appointed co-CEO alongside former CFO and President Nick Khan. Meanwhile, Stephanie's husband, Paul "Triple H" Levesque, has stepped in as head of creative and is said to be responsible for improving backstage conditions for performers as well as moving WWE in a more coherent creative direction.

Axios speculates that along with WWE, other "sports entertainment" companies, presumably including UFC and AEW, could be prime targets for high-ticket rights deals or even acquisition as streaming companies look to build up their libraries and subscription numbers in the years to come.

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