USA Network has admitted that the announcement of a “sale” of “Monday Night RAW” from WWE to Donald Trump was not an actual transaction, but just part of a story line for the professional wrestling show.
Like many other publications, RBR/TVBR reported the sale, which was announced in release distributed by PR Newswire on behalf of WWE, a publicly traded company, and USA Network, whose ultimate parent company, General Electric, is a publicly traded company.
“USA Network and WWE issued a press release on June 16 that referred to Monday Night RAW’s storyline of a ‘sale’ of WWE’s RAW to Donald Trump. We intended the release to be promotional for that ongoing story arc on the series. There is no such actual ‘sale’. We apologize for any confusion,” USA said in a follow-up release Thursday, June 18.
Did the original release contain any indication that it was a joke? Read for yourself:
Trump Buys RAW(R)
First Show Commercial Free
STAMFORD, Conn., June 16 /PRNewswire/ — World Wrestling Entertainment(R) announced the sale of its ratings juggernaut, Monday Night RAW (R), on USA Network to Donald Trump. The terms of the deal were not disclosed.
Commenting on the deal WWE(R) Chairman Vince McMahon stated, “This was an offer I couldn’t refuse.”
“The Monday Night RAW franchise has been one of the top cable franchises since its launch 17 years ago,” said Donald Trump. “I’m going to do things on the show that have never been done or seen before. As my first act as owner, I am doing something unprecedented. I am giving back to the people who have been loyal all these years. For the first time in more than 838 episodes of RAW, next week’s show will be live and commercial free.”
Mr. Trump will be making his first live appearance as the new owner of the RAW franchise this Monday. The episode will run commercial-free on USA Network at 9:00 PM ET/8:00 PM CT on Monday, June 22nd.
“Donald Trump is one of the most entertaining personalities with one of the sharpest business minds of our time. He’s always had the Midas touch, which will only add to the level of excitement for the loyal fans of WWE Monday Night Raw,” said Chris McCumber EVP Marketing, Digital and Brand Strategy for USA Network.
Log on to wwe.com for the latest news on the Trump purchase.
Trademarks: All WWE programming, talent names, images, likenesses, slogans, wrestling moves, trademarks, copyrights and logos are the exclusive property of World Wrestling Entertainment, Inc. and its subsidiaries. All other trademarks, logos and copyrights are the property of their respective owners.
Source: USA Network