The recent accusations and subsequent reports by Connecticut-based media that WWE (NYSE:WWE) was “caught” not paying taxes is blatantly false. Publicly traded companies often review taxes with regulatory authorities.
With regard to this recent and specific tax inquiry, WWE believed it should be classified under the single-factor approach to calculating its taxes based on the language of a statute that specifies the approach for businesses whose primary function is broadcasting activity.
WWE and the state agreed that the correct application of the statute to WWE was a bifurcated method with both approaches applying to different parts of its business.
As a result of the agreement, WWE paid the state approximately $500,000 annually over and above what WWE already had paid for the years 2005 through 2010, plus interest, and both WWE and the state have agreed to the bifurcated methodology moving forward.Since 1982, WWE has grown from 12 employees to more than 700. WWE has paid $600 million dollars in wages to employees in Connecticut and $55 million in payroll and other taxes over the past ten years. By any set of standards, WWE is an exemplary, CT-based, publicly traded corporation. On the issue of tax credits, WWE has a responsibility to its shareholders to apply for tax credits when possible. When WWE launches its network (estimated to employ an additional 200 people), we hope to be considered for Governor Malloy’s Next Five Program, which provides additional economic assistance to companies like WWE. About WWE 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 programming is broadcast in more than 145 countries and 30 languages and reaches more than 600 million homes worldwide. The company is headquartered in Stamford, Conn., with offices in New York, Los Angeles, Miami, London, Mumbai, Shanghai, Singapore, Istanbul and Tokyo. Additional information on WWE (NYSE: WWE) can be found at wwe.com and corporate.wwe.com. For information on our global activities, go to http://www.wwe.com/worldwide/. Trademarks: All WWE programming, talent names, images, likenesses, slogans, wrestling moves, trademarks, logos and copyrights are the exclusive property of WWE and its subsidiaries. All other trademarks, logos and copyrights are the property of their respective owners. Forward-Looking Statements: This news release contains forward-looking statements pursuant to the safe harbor provisions of the Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995, which are subject to various risks and uncertainties. These risks and uncertainties include, without limitation, risks relating to maintaining and renewing key agreements, including television and pay-per-view programming distribution agreements; the need for continually developing creative and entertaining programming; the continued importance of key performers and the services of Vincent McMahon; the conditions of the markets in which we compete and acceptance of the Company's brands, media and merchandise within those markets; our exposure to bad debt risk; uncertainties relating to regulatory and litigation matters; risks resulting from the highly competitive nature of our markets; uncertainties associated with international markets; the importance of protecting our intellectual property and complying with the intellectual property rights of others; risks associated with producing and travelling to and from our large live events, both domestically and internationally; the risk of accidents or injuries during our physically demanding events; risks relating to our film business; risks relating to increasing content production for distribution on various platforms, including the potential creation of a WWE network; risks relating to our computer systems and online operations; risks relating to the large number of shares of common stock controlled by members of the McMahon family and the possibility of the sale of their stock by the McMahons or the perception of the possibility of such sales; the relatively small public float of our stock; and other risks and factors set forth from time to time in Company filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission. Actual results could differ materially from those currently expected or anticipated. In addition, our dividend is dependent on a number of factors, including, among other things, our liquidity and historical and projected cash flow, strategic plan (including alternative uses of capital), our financial results and condition, contractual and legal restrictions on the payment of dividends, general economic and competitive conditions and such other factors as our Board of Directors may consider relevant.