International expansion is key to WWE Network's business model, and the over-the-top streaming service is key to the Stamford, Connecticut-based corporation's future.
Entrance into a major pro wrestling market like Japan is big news, and WWE announced a date for that to happen today.
George Barrios, Chief Strategy & Financial Officer, said as much in the announcement that the Network would be available in Japan beginning on January 5, 2016:
Japan is strategically important for WWE given our passionate and engaged fan base in the market. The global expansion of WWE Network is critical to the continued growth of our brand internationally.
Along with the usual promotion of key shows on the $9.99 per month service, here's the details that were including in today's press release:
Beginning Tuesday, Jan. 5, 2016, WWE fans in Japan can order WWE Network online by visiting WWENetwork.com to receive their first month of service free. WWE Network in Japan will cost $9.99 USD per month, with no commitment and the ability to cancel any time.
Subscribers will have access to the U.S. English language version of WWE Network and get all 12 WWE pay-per-view events at no additional cost, as well as 24/7 scheduled programming and the most comprehensive video-on-demand library with more than 4,000 hours of content, including Raw and SmackDown re-airs, and every WWE, WCW and ECW pay-per-view.
WWE Network will first be available on desktop, laptop and mobile devices, followed by Apple TV, Amazon Fire TV, Sony PlayStation 3, Sony PlayStation 4, Xbox One, Xbox 360, Roku and Smart TVs in time for Royal Rumble.