An update has emerged on WWE’s plans for global expansion, with the company seemingly looking to “expand and improve” on their existing Performance Centers before expanding globally.
WWE presented their first-quarter earnings call on the evening of Thursday, 5 May, where it was noted that there is currently no official decision regarding the global expansion of WWE Performance Centers. The company currently operates two official Performance Center facilities, one based in Orlando and the other in London.
When questioned on the call about the matter, Frank Riddick, who serves as WWE’s Chief Financial and Administrative Officer, commented that there is a plan to expand and improve, though the exact details haven’t yet been figured out:
“On the Performance Centers, as we’ve ramped up, as Steph [McMahon] was pointing out, we’ve ramped up our recruiting effort, particularly with younger college athletes and the NIL program. We’re looking at expanding and improving some of our Performance Centers. We don’t have a decision on what we’re going to do yet, but we are looking at it.”
Fightful’s Sean Ross Sapp, who provided live coverage on Twitter during the call, commented that he’s recently heard that WWE’s global expansion plans were reportedly “on hold”:
WWE claim they're looking at expanding and improving on their Performance Centers.
I've heard recently that the global expansion was still "on hold" in that regard.
— Sean Ross Sapp of Fightful.com (@SeanRossSapp) May 5, 2022
Following the success of their two current Performance Centers, WWE has reportedly previously looked into opening similar facilities further afield, most notably in Japan. A February 2020 report from the Wrestling Observer Newsletter’s Dave Meltzer indicated that an official announcement was to be expected that July during WWE live events in Japan, though those shows ultimately never happened.
WWE also allegedly attempted to purchase a number of Japanese promotions to get their foot into the market, including All Japan Pro Wrestling, Dragon Gate, and World Wonder Ring Stardom, though all of these reported offers were turned down.
If you use any quotes from this article, please provide a link back to the earnings call and h/t to Adam Morrison of Inside the Ropes.