WWE released its fourth quarter financial report for 2016 today and held a conference call with investors. One of the most interesting points to come out of said call was Vince McMahon saying the company has big plans for 205 Live.
From PW Insider’s coverage of the call:
Vince was happy about the record setting revenue for the company and put over that they are “super-servicing” WWE Network subscribers with new live events and programming like the WWE UK championship tournament and 205 Live. Interesting to note that 205 Live would create new revenue for live revenue, merchandising and licensing, so the long term plan is to try and spin that off as it’s own entity, similar to NXT. Vince said that they have a lot of plans for UK fans as well. He gave no timetable for anything new with UK nor did they mention when they plan to tour 205 Live.
It was just two weeks ago that Triple H was calling the cruiserweight division a “work in progress” while speaking on its growing pains, namely that WWE creative is still figuring out how to properly use them. He did say he still believes in the show and McMahon’s comments clearly show that same belief.
That said, there’s a long way to go before 205 Live becomes enough of a success to justify touring. As noted in the latest edition of the Wrestling Observer Newsletter, this past week’s episode was only number 15 in the list of highest viewed shows on the WWE Network, behind two episodes of Total Bellas. That’s not to say they won’t get there eventually but it’s clear they have a long way to go.
One thing that will boost the division without a doubt is the return to in-ring competition for Austin Aries. It has been rumoured that when he does return, he will be entering a feud with Cruiserweight Champion Neville going in to Wrestlemania.
Have you been impressed with the Cruiserweight division thus far? Where can the WWE make improvements?