Tony Khan says Collision deal did not extend existing TV rights deal with Warner

By Wade Keller, PWTorch editor

First AEW Collision main event announced


Tony Khan said in today’s AEW media Q&A that the length of term for the new Saturday night AEW Collision series is the same as Dynamite and Rampage, seeming to indicate that Collision wasn’t added as part of a new extension of the partnership with Warner Bros. Discovery. The current deal expires at the end of 2023, but there have been reports of a WBD option for an additional year taking the current deal to the end of 2024.

An extension of the current TV deal is expected to lead to a substantial increase over the current reported $44 million annual rights fees. The performance of Collision could potentially factor into what WBD is willing to offer in terms of an extension on the existing deal. AEW is expected to command an annual rights fees above $100 million per year with the addition of Collision, and a five-year extension could conceivably approach or surpass $1 billion in total over the term of the deal, especially if additional content is offered to Max, the WBD rebranded streaming service.

Collision faces tough competition for viewers considering it’s on Saturday nights, opposite of NFL and college football games and others sports programming. It’s also a night when their target demographic of 18-49 men are often out doing other things on the weekend evening.

The 18-49 viewership for AEW Dynamite is down 21 percent through 20 weeks this year compared to the first 20 weeks last year.

The 18-49 viewership for AEW Rampage, which airs on Friday nights, is down 33 percent this year compared to last year through the first 20 weeks.

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