Vince McMahon admitted that WWE returning to the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia later this year is up in the air, depending on what happens with the coronavirus pandemic.
The Saudis are hoping to have WWE back in November as of now, but a date in December is also possible. This was confirmed during today’s WWE Q1 2020 earnings call with McMahon and Interim Chief Financial Officer Frank Riddick.
Vince said he wasn’t too sure if the Saudis will be able to give WWE the OK to perform in November or December due to the COVID-19 outbreak, but the Saudis really want WWE to come back later this year.
While WWE may have to nix their second 2020 event in the Kingdom, they will not lose the revenue from the Saudis that they are set to receive from it, according to Vince on the call. Vince said the “good part” about the second 2020 show potentially being canceled is that they are able to just “tack it onto” the backside of the 10 year contract, which means the event would essentially be just postponed.
WWE signed a ten-year deal with the Saudi General Sports Authority back in March 2018, which will see them run two shows per year in the country. They just held their fifth event back in February of this year, the Super ShowDown 2020 event.
An investor also asked McMahon and Riddick about the TV rights deal in the Kingdom. It was noted that the deal is moving slowly, as they often do in that region. Vince said WWE thought the deal would be finalized by now, but it’s not, and he acknowledged that there is some degree of uncertainty as to when the deal will be complete.
Stay tuned for updates on WWE’s return to the Kingdom and the working relationship with the Saudis.