STAMFORD, Conn. – April 13, 2010 – World Wrestling Entertainment® (NYSE: WWE) and Syfy announced today a multi-year agreement that brings Friday Night SmackDown® to the “Imagine Greater” network beginning in October 2010. Friday Night SmackDown will premiere on its new home October 1st at 8:00 PM ET. The program, which debuted more than 10 years ago, is one of the longest-running, weekly episodic shows on television.
Syfy’s original Friday night drama series will move to Tuesday night, where hit series such as Warehouse 13 and Eureka have yielded unprecedented ratings success. WWE NXT™ will leave Syfy in October as Friday Night SmackDown joins the schedule.
“WWE® is the ultimate in imagination-based sports entertainment. The fantastical thrills of Friday Night SmackDown provide an ideal addition to the Syfy slate, as it targets the younger male and female demographics, which are the fastest growing categories for WWE,” said Dave Howe, President, Syfy. “With Tuesday night, a proven winner for our original drama series including Warehouse 13, there is bigger opportunity for series such as Stargate Universe, Sanctuary and Caprica to thrive on a night with a significantly larger number of viewers available to watch live.”
“Syfy is a terrific partner and we look forward to bringing our proven ratings winner and ten year television institution, Friday Night SmackDown, to the network,” said WWE Chairman and CEO Vince McMahon. “With this move, WWE is thrilled to be expanding its long-standing relationship with the NBC Universal family.”
Friday Night SmackDown averages more than 3.4 million viewers a week and is currently the most watched TV program on Friday nights among Males under 55 and beats all Friday primetime programming on ABC, NBC, FOX and CW among Men 18-34*. The two hour television program will be presented weekly on Syfy and features a star-studded cast of WWE Superstars and Divas including Undertaker®, Edge®, Rey Mysterio®, Chris Jericho®, CM Punk®, Michelle McCool®, Beth Phoenix™ and Layla™.
*(Nielsen Media Research Q4 2009)
About WWE, Inc.
World Wrestling Entertainment, Inc., a publicly traded company (NYSE: WWE), is an integrated media organization and recognized leader in global entertainment. The company consists of a portfolio of businesses that create and deliver original content 52 weeks a year to a global audience. WWE is committed to family-friendly, PG content across all of its platforms including television programming, pay-per-view, digital media and publishing. WWE programming is broadcast in more than 145 countries and 30 languages and reaches more than 500 million homes worldwide. The company is headquartered in Stamford, Conn., with offices in New York, Los Angeles, Chicago, London, Shanghai, Sydney, Tokyo and Toronto. Additional information on World Wrestling Entertainment, Inc. can be found at corporate.wwe.com.
Syfy is a media destination for imagination-based entertainment. With year round acclaimed original series, events, blockbuster movies, classic science fiction and fantasy programming, a dynamic Web site (www.Syfy.com), and a portfolio of adjacent business (Syfy Ventures), Syfy is a passport to limitless possibilities. Originally launched in 1992 as SCI FI Channel, and currently in more than 96 million homes, Syfy is a network of NBC Universal, one of the world's leading media and entertainment companies. (Syfy. Imagine greater.)
World Wrestling Entertainment, Inc.
World Wrestling Entertainment, Inc.
Trademarks: All WWE programming, talent names, images, likenesses, slogans, wrestling moves, trademarks, copyrights and logos are the exclusive property of World Wrestling Entertainment, Inc. and its subsidiaries. All other trademarks, logos and copyrights are the property of their respective owners.
Forward-Looking Statements: This news release contains forward-looking statements pursuant to the safe harbor provisions of the Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995, which are subject to various risks and uncertainties. These risks and uncertainties include risks relating to maintaining and renewing key agreements, including television distribution agreements; the need for continually developing creative and entertaining programming; the continued importance of key performers and the services of Vincent McMahon; the conditions of the markets in which we compete; acceptance of the Company's brands, media and merchandise within those markets; uncertainties relating to regulatory and litigation matters; risks resulting from the highly competitive nature of our markets; the importance of protecting our intellectual property and complying with the intellectual property rights of others; risks associated with producing live events both domestically and internationally; uncertainties associated with international markets; risks relating to our film business and any new business initiative which we may undertake; risks relating to the large number of shares of common stock controlled by members of the McMahon family; and other risks and factors set forth from time to time in Company filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission. Actual results could differ materially from those currently expected or anticipated. In addition, our dividend is significant and is dependent on a number of factors, including, among other things, our liquidity and historical and projected cash flow, strategic plan (including alternative uses of capital), our financial results and condition, contractual and legal restrictions on the payment of dividends, general economic and competitive conditions and such other factors as our Board of Directors may consider relevant, including a waiver by the McMahon family of a portion of the dividends.