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WWE & Disney ink first of what could be several international streaming deals

WWE Network

The profile of WWE President Nick Khan in Sports Business Journal earlier this week mentioned how the company was using their domestic streaming deal with NBCUniversal’s Peacock as a template for upcoming international deals.

It looks like that plan was already in action, and with some high-profile business partners.

Today (Jan. 27), Deadline is reporting WWE has licensed the rights to their streaming content in Indonesia to Disney’s Hotstar subscription service, which the Mouse House acquired along with several other Fox assets in 2019.

Similar to the Peacock arrangement, all WWE live events will be available on Disney+ Hotstar as part of a standard subscription, at no additional cost. Programming will stream in Indonesia’s local language, Bahasa Indonesia, as well as in English.

The partnership starts with Royal Rumble this Saturday. And Indonesia may just be the first of several regional deals between the two companies.

The pact is the first streaming agreement reached directly between Disney and the WWE, but the companies are understood to have held preliminary discussions for other territories. Disney is looking to add as many subscription drivers as it can on the way to its goal of 300 million to 350 million total streaming subscribers by the end of 2024.

In addition to future international contracts, it will also be interesting to see if deepening ties between Disney and WWE will result in Raw and SmackDown replays remaining on Disney’s Hulu streaming service. Those rights are set to expire later this year.

Khan is understandably bullish on the news:

“[Disney is] the gold standard in creating iconic intellectual property that serves as the backbone for international business growth.” [Teaming with with Disney+ Hotstar [will allow WWE to] deliver WWE Network content including WrestleMania on a best-in-class platform to our existing fans in Indonesia while also introducing WWE to new audiences in the region as Disney+ continues to expand its reach internationally.”

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