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Sky Deutschland pulls out of WWE over PPV issue, signs AEW deal

German pay-television broadcaster Sky Deutschland has announced that it will not be renewing its World Wrestling Entertainment rights and has signed a deal with All Elite Wrestling.

Sky’s current agreement in Germany with WWE began in April 2017 and is due to expire at the end of next month. The deal covers the wrestling promotion’s premier pay-per-view events and WWE’s flagship programmes, Raw and SmackDown.

The broadcaster said: “The WWE has decided that the broadcasting rights to the pay-per-view events are no longer part of the media-rights tender in the German market. As a result, the WWE will no longer be part of Sky Deutschland’s programming from the end of March.”

It added: “Sky customers can still look forward to the best wrestling entertainment. All Elite Wrestling (AEW) pay-per-view events will soon be available for order on Sky Select.”

AEW was founded in 2019 by American businessman Tony Khan, who is also the co-owner of NFL team Jacksonville Jaguars, and English football team Fulham.

Commercial broadcaster ProSiebenSat.1 secured the WWE rights in Germany in 2014 in a wide-ranging agreement. In addition to free-to-air coverage, the deal allowed the broadcaster to make PPV events available on its Maxdome streaming portal.

German commercial broadcaster Tele 5 also held rights to show Raw in the country in rolling one-year deals beginning in 2014, following the expiry of Sky’s three-year contract from 2011 to 2013.