WWE Takeover Described As A Sham In New Lawsuit

Vince McMahon Ari Emanuel WWE TKO Group

Endeavor is facing a legal challenge over its takeover of WWE as part of a new lawsuit that has described a “sham sales process.”

The Laborer’s District Council And Contractors’ Pension Fund Of Ohio has launched a lawsuit in the state of Delaware bringing into question the Endeavor takeover of WWE. Vince McMahon, Nick Khan, Paul Levesque, and other members of WWE’s Board of Directors have been named as defendants in the action.

The court docket for the case sets out a narrative of Vince McMahon using his “domineering personality and control over WWE to carry out his own personal agenda at the expense of the Company’s public stockholders.” It suggests that there is a pattern to Vince McMahon’s behaviour which has had the goal of him remaining in power and that’s why he approached his “long-time friend” Endeavor CEO Ari Emanuel about a deal.

WWE is accused of not telling other bidders about Endeavor’s own bid which gave Emanuel’s company a massive headstart in the due diligence process. WWE’s Board is described as filled with McMahon’s “cronies” and that the Board used Endeavor’s headstart as a pretext to claim other bidders showed less urgency in completing a deal.

The suit notes that WWE received three other offers for the company that would have attracted a higher share price for stockholders but that those deals all involved “cashing out WWE stockholders” which meant McMahon would have been completely removed from the company. WWE is accused of making no counterproposal to that offer. The names of the companies involved in making offers have been redacted in the public filing.

Vince McMahon At Centre Of WWE Legal Trouble

Vince McMahon is also accused of “stuffing the pockets” of his “loyalists” through the Endeavor deal with Nick Khan netting a huge bonus following the completion of the takeover as did Paul Levesque.

Vince McMahon’s history of sexual misconduct allegations is pored over in great detail in the filing as the current TKO Executive Chairman is accused of “wielding unchecked power” in WWE at the time of the takeover.

The lawsuit also points to the fact that on September 12 2023 when the takeover was completed, TKO’s price on the New York Stock Exchange closed at $103.05 while the stock had plummeted to $78.12 per share on November 16, 2023, which was one day before the suit was filed.