Palace intrigue that mimics WWE storylines has continued in the boardroom.
Stephanie McMahon announced her resignation as the company’s co-CEO on Tuesday after her father, Vince McMahon, returned to the company last week. He was unanimously voted Executive Chairman by the board of directors, the company announced Tuesday.
“About 8 months ago, I took a leave of absence and within a few weeks, unexpectedly had the opportunity of a lifetime. I had the privilege to return as the Co-CEO and Chairwoman of the Board of WWE,” Stephanie McMahon wrote. “I cannot put into words how proud I am to have led what I consider to be the greatest company in the world, working alongside a remarkable leadership team, and one of the strongest executives I have known in my Co-CEO, Nick Khan.”
Vince McMahon stepped down as CEO and Chairman last July after it emerged that he had paid out over $12 million in “hush money” to a number of women who were once employees of WWE over infidelity and, in some cases, claims of misconduct. He returned last week with the stated intent to perform a “strategic review” of the company and potentially explore a sale with WWE’s media right’s deals up in 2024.
Since that news, WWE’s stock is up about 25 percent, from $72 a share to $90. The total value of the company is at $6.7 billion, as of market close on Tuesday.
Khan is now WWE’s sole CEO, the company announced.
“Our Founder, Vince McMahon, has returned as Executive Chair and is leading an exciting process regarding strategic alternatives,” Stephanie McMahon continued in her note. “And with Nick’s leadership and Paul ‘Triple H’ Levesque as Chief Content Officer, I am confident WWE is in the perfect place to continue to provide unparalleled creative content and drive maximum value for shareholders.
“WWE is in such a strong position, that I have decided to return to my leave and take it one step further with my official resignation.”
Vince McMahon offered public support of his daughter’s announcement.
“First, I’d like to express my full support for Stephanie’s personal decision,” he said in a statement. “I’ll forever be grateful that she offered to step in during my absence and I’m truly proud of the job she did co-leading WWE. Stephanie has always been the ultimate ambassador for our company, and her decades of contributions have left an immeasurable impact on our brand.
“I’m proud to announce that Nick Khan will serve as WWE CEO. Nick’s business acumen and mastery of the media industry have helped catapult our business to record revenue and profitability. Together, we look forward to working with the Board at this critical moment in time to review our strategic alternatives and maximize value for all WWE shareholders.”