WWE Planning Transformative Change For Raw & SmackDown

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WWE is bigger than ever with record revenues but could the company really be about to put Raw and SmackDown on the same pedestal as its premium live events?

The WWE takeover by Endeavor was completed in September 2023 and already plenty of changes have been put in motion. The company had already began soliciting for site fees for major shows with WWE receiving almost $3 million from the Welsh Government for Clash at the Castle in 2022.

That approach has continued and could see WWE eventually take one of its biggest shows to Saudi Arabia where there is currently a deal in place for two shows held in the Kingdom per year with the company netting $50 million per show.

Is WWE Looking For Raw & SmackDown Site Fees?

Speaking on Wrestling Observer Radio, Dave Meltzer noted that now this PLE approach to site fees could become a part of WWE finding hosts for its weekly Raw and SmackDown shows:

Right now, they’re just getting them for the pay-per-view shows, and not even necessarily every pay-per-view show in the United States. Although now that the B-shows have been pretty much moved overseas and they’re getting site fees for those shows, and the A-shows are gonna mostly be stadium shows – maybe Survivor Series will probably still be an arena show – but the idea is they’re working on getting site fees.

They already do for Royal Rumble, SummerSlam and WrestleMania, and they’re working on getting them for Money in the Bank and Survivor Series, and now the next step is to get communities to pay them to bring Raw and SmackDown tapings in. Hey, more power to them if they can get it.

I don’t know how many people as far as tourists flock to a city on a Monday or Friday when Raw and SmackDown are in town. They do come in for pay-per-views. But if they can get it… just to come to your city, they’re gonna want your city to pay. And it’s a great business to be in, it takes away all the risk of running shows if you’re getting paid to come in, that’s for sure.

They’re giving you the building for free, and you’re gonna get paid to come in, and you’re gonna get other benefits from the city – promotional and everything like that, they’ll help you promote your event because it’s incumbent on them for the event to be a success because the whole idea of spending that money is to bring people into the city and come to restaurants and stay at hotels and all that. We’ll see if they can pull that off. If they do, that’s transformative.

Despite the company looking for site fees for major shows, one report suggested WWE did not receive a penny in public money for Backlash France.

h/t WrestleTalk