The WWE and UFC have officially merged to form TKO Group Holdings, and it's causing quite the buzz.
Endeavor, the parent company of UFC, kicked things off back in 2016 by snagging a majority stake in the UFC. Fast forward to 2021, they went public with an IPO and used that cash to gobble up the rest, making it a wholly-owned subsidiary in March of that year.
But then, in 2022, WWE's long-time CEO, Vince McMahon, stepped down amidst some hush-money allegations, and his daughter, Stephanie McMahon, took the reins alongside Nick Khan. Vince made a comeback as executive chairman of WWE in early 2023 to help sell the company, and that's when the stars aligned.
WWE and Endeavor struck a deal, merging WWE with Zuffa (the parent of UFC), giving birth to TKO Group Holdings.
This new entity hit the New York Stock Exchange under the ticker symbol "TKO" on September 12, and it's got Endeavor's CEO, Ari Emanuel, at charge. Vince McMahon isn't riding off into the sunset just yet; he's sticking around as the Executive Chair of TKO Group Holdings, and he's got some serious clout, being able to pick five out of eleven directors and having some veto power. Dana White, the former UFC president, is donning the CEO hat for UFC under TKO, while Nick Khan is stepping into the role of WWE president, kinda like Dana's old gig.
As for ownership, Endeavor holds the lion's share with a 51% controlling interest, leaving WWE shareholders with the remaining 49%. Vince McMahon got a 34% stake in the new venture, marking the first time in forever that the McMahon family isn't the top dogs in WWE.
Plus, on the stock market, TKO is currently clocking in at a cool $102 per share. What a merge for the ages. Can't wait to see what they will accomplish!