Vince McMahon Retires From WWE Amid Ongoing Investigation Into Conduct
The longtime WWE owner has announced he is stepping away from the company for good.
After over 40 years of leading World Wrestler Entertainment, taking it from a regional wrestling federation to a global entertainment corporation, Vince McMahon is retiring as CEO amid an internal investigation into hush money payments. The former chairman and CEO of the company announced the news in a tweet, writing, "At 77, time for me to retire. Thank you, WWE Universe. Then. Now. Forever. Together."
While this may have come as a shock even two months ago, it's been a tumultuous time for McMahon, as he had temporarily stepped down from his chairman and CEO roles within the company, following a Wall Street Journal report of an internal WWE investigation into sexual misconduct. It was first reported in early June that McMahon was alleged to have paid a former employee to keep them from discussing an affair. A further Wall Street Journal report claimed the investigation uncovered another $12 million paid out over the years to women.
In the midst of the investigation, Stephanie McMahon stepped into the role of interim chairwoman and CEO of WWE, while it was announced Friday, July 22 that her husband Paul "Triple H" Levesque would resume his role as executive vice president, talent relations. Levesque left that role last year after a medical emergency, at which time John Laurinaitis took on the duties. However, Laurinaitis is reported to also be involved in the investigation and is believed to currently be on leave from the company.
In a press release, McMahon elaborated further on his retirement, adding, "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."
Moving forward, WWE's press release notes that Stephanie will serve as the company's chairwoman and co-CEO, alongside co-CEO Nick Khan. At this moment, there's no news on who will take McMahon's place within the company creatively, though GameSpot has reached out to WWE for comment. In the meantime, he remains the company's majority stockholder.
For more, you can check out the recent discussion on the allegations from GameSpot's wrestling podcast, Wrestle Buddies, below.
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