SPOTLIGHTED PODCAST ALERT (YOUR ARTICLE BEGINS A FEW INCHES DOWN)...
WWE’s latest WWE Network count declined in the Fourth Quarter 2015 due to a loss of domestic subscribers. (WWE Q4-2015 Financial Report)
The Fourth Quarter and Year-End 2015 total was 1.217 million total paid subscribers. This was down slightly from 1.233 million at the end of the Third Quarter.
In the quarter, WWE lost 50,000 domestic subscribers. WWE added 34,000 international subscribers as the Network became available in new markets, such as India, to arrive at a net decline of 16,000 (one percent).
– WWE reported an increase in their average paid subscribers metric, which is essentially their profit break-even point. The Q4 figure was 1.237 million average paid, up from 1.173 million in Q3 and 1.216 million in Q2.
WWE has comfortably passed the break-even point, but is not yet in the territory of delivering big profitability.
– Financially, the WWE Network category produced $37.2 million in fourth quarter revenue. This compares to $27.2 million in Q4-2014 during the ramp-up phase.
WWE noted that “licensed partner agreements” impacted their Network revenue. WWE reported that nine percent of their Network subs were from the agreements, lowering their revenue per subscriber.
– Looking ahead to the First Quarter 2016, WWE is expecting a slight increase in Network subscribers due to the lead-up to WrestleMania.
Their prediction is 1.280 million average paid subscribers.
WWE expects a bigger increase in the Second Quarter since WM32 takes place in April. WWE will release an updated Network count the day after Mania.
– WWE is also looking to boost subscriber numbers by adding more original content. WWE is expecting to add “more than 300 hours of original content” in 2016, an increase from the pace in 2015. WWE also plans to add 1,000 more hours of archived content to the on-demand library.