[WWE] Job Openings, Wide Industry Coverage of NBCU Deal

– WWE has taken an ad out in Daily Variety for three positions they are currently hiring for: writer, writing assistant, and field director/producer. For descriptions on these and other job openings, go to wwe-careers.com.

– In a recent Daily Variety story, USA and Sci-Fi President Bonnie Hammer — who’s relationship with Vince McMahon is said to be instrumental in bringing RAW back to USA — talks about the importance of Telemundo repeats of RAW that will reach out to the Spanish-speaking audience, as well as the fact that RAW’s relaunch will be heavily cross-promoted on other NBCU networks Bravo, Sci-Fi, Telemundo and NBC. The story states that the other weekly hour of programming included in the deal will be a “weekend morning hour on USA,” that WWE will get about $30 million per year in licensing fees from the deal, and that NBCU will spend $8 million to promote the relaunch. Said NBCU head Jeff Zucker: “The campaign will brand wrestling as integral to the fabric of USA, as important as the U.S. Olympics team and series such as ‘Monk,’ ‘Kojak,’ ‘The 4400’ and ‘The Dead Zone.'” As to the $13 million in net ad revenues that WWE is leaving behind by moving from SpikeTV, Linda McMahon said she hopes that will hopefully be offset by selling sponsorships to the live events and to community-outreach programs. The full story can be found here.

– There’s a great Advertising Age story up, which can be found here, that talks about the huge success and marketing effort around Mania, as well as the USA deal. One fun tidbit of note: “A deal with Mangia Media put Wrestlemania on more than 400,000 pizza boxes, delivery trucks and in-store at independently-owned pizza parlors.”

– The Hollywood Reporter has all the scoop on the USA deal as well, focusing on the business aspects of it. According to the Reporter, WWE’s licensing fee will be slightly higher than the $600,000 per episode fee Spike has been paying, and while loss of ad revenue could cost WWE $0.20 per share of profits (according to analyst Dennis McAlpine), NBCU will be incentivized to promote RAW as they’ll be taking in all the ad dollars themselves. An increased audience that could result from that will likely be beneficial to all parties.

– Multichannel News hits it from a cable industry perspective, here, including this quote from Hammer: “I’m thrilled to be back in business again with Vince and Linda McMahon … I led the USA team that helped grow RAW into a true pop phenomenon, and it’s great to welcome it home.”