Endeavor WWE

REPORT: Endeavor, parent company of the UFC, to purchase WWE

According to a report from Reuters, Endeavor Group Holdings Inc (EDR.N), the parent of the popular UFC mixed martial arts franchise, is in talks to acquire World Wrestling Entertainment Inc (WWE) (WWE.N) in an all-stock deal.

The author of the article states their source as “people familiar with the matter,” and that the source “requested anonymity because the matter is confidential.”

The deal could be announced as soon as Monday, according to CNBC. Endeavor shareholders will own 51% of the combined company, while WWE shareholders would get 49%, CNBC reported, citing sources.

This weekend the WWE is holding their annual WrestleMania blockbuster, arguably the promotion’s biggest event of the year.  WrestleMania 39 is taking place at the SoFi Stadium in Inglewood, California.

WWE shares, which have risen more than 30% this year, closed at $91.26 on Friday, giving the company a market capitalization of $6.8 billion. Endeavor has a market value of $11.3 billion.

McMahon had retired in July last year as the company’s CEO and chairman, following an investigation into his alleged misconduct. He returned as the executive chairman of the media and entertainment company’s board after co-chief executive officer and chairwoman Stephanie McMahon stepped down.

Endeavor purchased the UFC from Zuffa LLC in July 2016.  The $4.4 billion sale was the largest in sports franchise history.

In 2001, UFC President Dana White and the Fertitta brothers purchased the company for $2 million from Semaphore Entertainment Group.

At that point, both Fertittas had 45 percent at White had 10 percent. In 2010, the Fertitta brothers sold 9 percent and White 1 percent when they brought in Flash Entertainment.

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