Here's Why the WWE Network Is a 'Ground Breaking Event'
Updated from 8:22 a.m. to include news that the WWE Network is coming to Apple TV.
NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- The next big thing for World Wrestling Entertainment
First announced in January at the Consumer Electronics Show, the WWE Network is an over-the-top (OTT) service, akin to Netflix
On the fourth-quarter earnings call, CFO George Barrios noted that the company's OIBDA (operating income before depreciation and amortization) would fluctuate, due to the launch of the Network, as well as the eventual television deal.
"For the first quarter of 2014, we expect net income to decline on a year-over-year basis by $15 million to $18 million resulting in net loss of $12 million to $15 million the first quarter," Barrios said on the call.
WWE's deal with Comcast
There's been a lot of attention paid to the negotiations with NBCUniversal, as the company is trying to position itself as live content, similar to MLB, NFL, and the NBA, all of which have very lucrative television deals. "There's a very frothy market for live entertainment," Barrios said in an interview with TheStreet last week. "NBCU remains very committed to live entertainment. We talked in the exclusive window, but we couldn't come to a deal that we both felt comfortable with."
WWE is free to shop its programming to other content companies, but NBCUniversal has a limited right to match any offer WWE receives.