Earlier this afternoon (Jan. 26), WrestleVotes posted that they were “hearing rumblings that Slim Jim has notified WWE they are pulling their sponsorships from tomorrow’s Royal Rumble event. It is yet to be determined if they will remain partners in the future.”
The cause of Slim Jim’s decision wasn’t stated by the social media scoopster, but it was clearly over the allegations made against Vince McMahon and others at WWE in Janel Grant’s sex trafficking lawsuit that was filed yesterday.
Reasoning that’s spelled out clearly in Slim Jim’s confirmation of that report in a statement given to Post Wrestling’s John Pollack:
Slim Jim values integrity and respect in all of our partnerships. Given the recent disturbing allegations against Vince McMahon, at this time we’ve decided to pause our promotional activities with WWE. This decision reflects our commitment to our brand values and responsibility to our community.
We will continue to monitor the situation and base our future engagements on our values and what’s best for our brand.
WWE’s parent company TKO has commented on the allegations against their Executive Chairman, and said they’re handling the matter internally. Losing a key partner on the eve of one of WWE’s biggest events could very well influence TKO to handle the situation quickly and decisively.
We’ll see if any other sponsors follow the Conagra Brands’ snack product in “pausing” their relationship with WWE, and how TKO responds if they do.
UPDATE: Vince McMahon resigned hours after Slim Jim’s statement. Much more here.