The following press release was sent to us by WWE today:
CHANNEL 5 AND WWE® ANNOUNCE FREE-TO-AIR BROADCAST AGREEMENT IN THE UK
LONDON and STAMFORD, Conn., January 21, 2020 –WWE (NYSE: WWE) today announced a new partnership with ViacomCBS’s Channel 5 to broadcast highlights of its weekly programs Raw® and SmackDown® on free-to-air television in the UK.
Beginning February 2, Channel 5 will air a one-hour version of Raw on Sundays at 10:30 a.m. and one-hour version of SmackDown on Saturdays at 10:30 a.m. In addition, NXT UK will air on Paramount Network each Wednesday at midnight.
“Bringing highlights of our flagship programming to free-to-air television for the first time in the UK with Channel 5 is a significant step for the WWE brand, and more great news for our passionate fanbase in the UK,” said Andy Warkman, Vice President and General Manager, WWE UK & Ireland.
“WWE has strong appeal throughout the UK and across generations so we’re very excited to be bringing their high-quality entertainment to an even bigger free-to-air audience in the UK,” said James Tatam, VP Commercial, Digital and Operations, Channel 5.
As part of the agreement, content will be made available on Channel 5’s streaming service My5. In addition, full seasons of Total Divas and Miz & Mrs will be offered to My5 viewers, as well as on ViacomCBS-owned Pluto TV in the UK.
In addition to the new free-to-air agreement, earlier this month WWE launched on BT Sport in the UK, offering exclusive live broadcasts of Raw, SmackDown and NXT, as well as NXT UK and WWE’s monthly pay-per-view events. The launch of WWE on Channel 5 builds on WWE’s longstanding commitment to the UK. Throughout the company’s 30+ year history in the region, WWE continues to expand its presence with marquee live events, annual talent tours and the development of local talent at the state-of-the-art WWE UK Performance Center in London.
WWE, a publicly traded company (NYSE: WWE), is an integrated media organization and recognized leader in global entertainment. The company consists of a portfolio of businesses that create and deliver original content 52 weeks a year to a global audience. WWE is committed to family-friendly entertainment on its television programming, pay-per-view, digital media and publishing platforms. WWE’s TV-PG, family-friendly programming can be seen in more than 800 million homes worldwide in 28 languages. WWE Network, the first-ever 24/7 over-the-top premium network that includes all live pay-per-views, scheduled programming and a massive video-on-demand library, is currently available in more than 180 countries. The company is headquartered in Stamford, Conn., with offices in New York, Los Angeles, London, Mexico City, Mumbai, Shanghai, Singapore, Dubai, Munich and Tokyo.
About Channel 5
Channel 5 is a public service broadcaster and the UK’s third largest commercial TV station. Launched in March 1997 Channel 5 has been owned by ViacomCBS Networks International since September 2014. Channel 5, 5STAR, 5USA, 5Select and My5 TV reach 3 in 4 of the UK viewing public each month with a diverse schedule including issue-led documentaries, popular factual, accessible history, stunning natural history, inclusive entertainment and reality, top level sport, high quality scripted programming and critically acclaimed children’s, news and current affairs programming. Through its agenda-driving commissions, Channel 5 has led on societal issues from inequality to inner city gang life, homelessness to mental health, aiming to tell the story of modern Britain by reflecting the lives of people across the nation. My5 is an on-demand service allowing viewers to watch content online for free from Channel 5, 5STAR, 5USA, 5Select and 5Spike, as well as selected third-party channels. In 2018, Channel 5 won its first BAFTA for Cruising with Jane McDonald and was named ‘Channel of the Year’ at the Edinburgh TV Festival. In 2019, Chanel 5 won best documentary award for The Abused at the RTS Awards, Edinburgh TV Awards and the Association of International Broadcasters Awards.
About Pluto TV
Pluto TV is the leading free streaming television service in America, delivering 200+ live and original channels and thousands of on-demand movies in partnership with major TV networks, movie studios, publishers, and digital media companies. Pluto TV is available on all mobile, web and connected TV streaming devices and millions of viewers tune in each month to watch premium news, TV shows, movies, sports, lifestyle, and trending digital series. Headquartered in Los Angeles, Pluto TV has offices in New York, Silicon Valley, Chicago and Berlin.