Vince McMahon Announces Retirement from WWE

by Nick Geddes

Vince McMahon’s time in WWE has come to an end. The former chairman and CEO of the sports entertainment conglomerate announced his retirement Friday after more than four decades.

McMahon, 76, made the announcement via a press release sent out by WWE.

“As I approach 77 years old, I feel it’s time for me to retire as Chairman and CEO of WWE,” McMahon said. “Throughout the years, it’s been a privilege to help WWE bring you joy, inspire you, thrill you, surprise you, and always entertain you. I would like to thank my family for mightily contributing to our success, and I would also like to thank all of our past and present Superstars and employees for their dedication and passion for our brand.

“Most importantly, I would like to thank our fans for allowing us into your homes every week and being your choice of entertainment. I hold the deepest appreciation and admiration for our generations of fans all over the world who have liked, currently like, and sometimes even love our form of Sports Entertainment.”

McMahon’s retirement comes amid allegations he had multiple affairs with women in the company. He reportedly paid millions in hush money to keep the women quiet. He stepped down from his duties on June 17 to allow the investigation to take place.

What’s Next for WWE?

McMahon’s daughter, Stephanie, was subsequently named the interim chairwoman and CEO. Vince McMahon said in his statement that WWE president Nick Khan will serve as Co-CEO alongside his daughter moving forward.

“Our global audience can take comfort in knowing WWE will continue to entertain you with the same fervor, dedication, and passion as always,” McMahon said. “I am extremely confident in the continued success of WWE, and I leave our company in the capable hands of an extraordinary group of Superstars, employees, and executives – in particular, both Chairwoman and Co-CEO Stephanie McMahon and Co-CEO Nick Khan.

“As the majority shareholder, I will continue to support WWE in any way I can. My personal thanks to our community and business partners, shareholders, and Board of Directors for their guidance and support through the years. Then. Now. Forever. Together.”

It’s been a day of change inside the company, as in the morning hours of Friday, WWE announced via Twitter that Paul Levesque (Triple H) would resume his position as EVP of Talent Relations. The 14-time WWE World Champion recently retired from in-ring competition following a heart issue which hospitalized him. Levesque is the husband of Stephanie McMahon. The company is also reportedly on the verge of becoming a TV-14 product once more.

“Monday Night Raw,” WWE’s flagship show, has been TV-PG since 2008 when the company shifted to more family-friendly content. It was previously TV-14 from 1997-2008.

Vince McMahon Propelled WWE into the Mainstream

Nevertheless, it’s the end of the road for Vince McMahon, who catapulted professional wrestling into the mainstream. Hulk Hogan and the introduction of “WrestleMania” took the company to new heights in the 80s, while Stone Cold Steve Austin and The Rock made wrestling cool during the 90s in the “Attitude Era.” McMahon oversaw the entirety of it, even taking the company public on Oct. 19, 1999.

In the 21st century, WWE has become a money-making machine. WWE reported $333.4 million in 2022 first quarter revenue, a 27% increase and quarterly record. Since moving the WWE Network over to Peacock in 2021, viewership of its content has been up. Khan said in February that $3.5 million paying Peacock subscribers had watched WWE programming.

This is a developing story. Check back with Outsider for updates.