Vince McMahon Will Sell 8.4 Million Shares of WWE-UFC Company TKO, Ari Emanuel Interested in 1 Million

The holding company was formed in September when the pro wrestling company merged with Endeavor’s mixed martial arts league

Vince McMahon, Ari Emmanuel
Vince McMahon, Ari Emmanuel (Getty Images)

Vince McMahon will sell 8.4 million shares of TKO Group Holdings, the sports and entertainment company announced on Thursday. McMahon is the former owner of World Wrestling Entertainment and current executive chairman of TKO. Those shares make up approximately one-fourth of his current holdings in the company, with an estimated worth of $700 million.

Endeavor ‘s Ari Emanuel, TKO’s CEO and director, is interested in purchasing up 1 million of those shares, according to a press release. Per a Thursday securities filing, TKO plans to buy back $100 million worth of the shares in the sale.

The company’s president, COO and director Mark Shapiro is also committing to a $1 million purchase. An unspecified number of TKO directors are interested in buying $850,000 worth of the stock at the public offering price. These moves have been seen as a vote of confidence in the company’s future.

TKO was formed just two months ago when WWE, which McMahon owned and cofounded, merged with the Endeavor’s UFC mixed martial arts league. The deal valued UFC at $12.1 billion and WWE at $9.3 billion.

In Endeavor’s Q3 earnings report, their Owned Sports Properties segment saw revenue climb 19.3% year-over-year to $479.7 million, while adjusted EBITDA for the segment jumped 21.3% to $237.4 million.

The growth was attributed to higher media rights fees from contractual increases, higher live event revenue and increases in sponsorships and site fees, as well as two additional UFC Fight Nights in the quarter. Those site fees involve cities paying the company to bring their events to town. The sports segment also booked $52 million of revenue from Endeavor’s acquisition of WWE.

McMahon stepped away from WWE in 2022 after a sexual misconduct investigation, but returned in January as executive chairman. He reimbursed WWE for the cost of that inquiry and settlements with multiple women, which was more than $17 million.

So far, he has not faced any charges stemming from the allegations that necessitated the investigation.

“The creation of TKO marks an exciting new chapter for UFC and WWE as leaders in global sports and entertainment,” Emanuel said when the deal was announced. “We are confident in our ability to accelerate their respective growth and unlock long-term sustainable value for shareholders.”

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