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VINCE MCMAHON COMMENTS ON WWE SEVERING TIES WITH HULK HOGAN, FUTURE NETWORK CONTENT AND MORE: COMPLETE COVERAGE OF WWE'S 2015 SECOND QUARTER EARNINGS CONFERENCE CALL

By Mike Johnson on 2015-07-30 10:58:04

Welcome to PWInsider.com's live, ongoing coverage of WWE's Second Quarter Results conference call for 2015.

Michael Weiss welcomed everyone to the call.  Vince McMahon and George Barrios are also on the call.

Vince McMahon said they delivered strong earnings quote and shows the value of their content.   He said they had 38% international growth and the WWE Network earnings have exceeded their PPV revenue.  He said they are on the right path with it.  There was a lot more original content and they are over 1.2 million subscribers.

Vince said they are doing their own version of HBO's "Hard Knocks" and are working on developing a studio show.  He pushed their own version of South Park, Camp WWE.

Vince also praised their reality series, Tough Enough and Total Divas and claimed they had 14 million unique viewers with those shows plus Raw and Smackdown.  He also pushed how major their social media footprint has become and said they will be working with Facebook.

George Barrios noted the WWE Network generated more revenue for the company than their annual PPV business had over the previous decade.  Beast in the East was the most watched program in the history of the WWE Network with the exception of PPVs.

Barrios ran down the numbers for the earnings quarter.

They announced a reality series for the NXT roster, the WWE studio show, and a show that would see a fan sit down with a Superstar and Diva.  They also plan to expand the WWE Network VOD areas and they will continue with the free month for new subscription.   

They also noted they plan to sell WWE Network cards in stores, similar to how you can buy an iTunes card.  That is a great idea.

They will release the next Network subscriber count at the end of the third quarter.

They then went to the Q&A Session.

When it was noted that the company intends to have 180 hours of programming and whether they were still in line with their projected costs for the year.  They are.

They were asked about different countries that haven't gotten the Network yet.  Barrios said they had 9 countries in mind when they launched and they have checked off four of them and are working on others but can't give details.

They were asked whether they were making more money with the Network subscription model vs. whether they had remained on just PPV.  Barrios said they would based on the PPV numbers of the last decades, especially when they hit their projected 1.3-1.4 million subs.

They were asked about the new Facebook partnership, where they were invited to be one of the brands to provide video content and shae in the revenue.  They are early on but they know they can crush it.

 When asked about progamming they need for the Network, Vince McMahon said they need to develop content that plays to all the different age demos.

They were asked about Summerslam.  Barrios said it isn't there yet but it's starting to feel like "Wrestlemania in August."  Vince said they were so happy with the content of the show they expanded to four hours.

They were asked about doing more specials in the vein of Beast in the East.  Barrios said they will continue to do those sort of specials because the first one was a home run.

They were asked about NXT continuing to be built as a franchise.  Barrios said that HHH has done an amazing job and we've seen talents go from there to main events and it serves a somewhat unique audience and is different from Raw and Smackdown.  Vince said he's confident about the talents they are going to churn out from NXT.

They were asked about severing ties to Hulk Hogan.  Vince McMahon said he is not longer associated with the organization and it would have no "material effect" on WWE.  They will focus on talents who can actually compete inn the ring.  Ouch!

That's it!

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