WWE signs new media rights deal with ABEMA for broadcast in Japan
WWE Raw, SmackDown, NXT, and all future premium live events will be available exclusively on the streaming platform, ABEMA in Japan.
WWE has struck a new media rights deal for broadcast of its shows in Japan. According to a press release about the deal, WWE's premium live events in future, will be broadcast exclusively on ABEMA.
From October, WWE Raw, SmackDown, NXT, and all future premium live events will be available exclusively on the streaming platform, ABEMA in Japan.
As per the press release, for the first time ever, Raw and SmackDown will be broadcast free-to-air in Japan every week with Japanese commentary after the shows are first telecast in the US. The broadcasts will start with Raw on Tuesday, October 3 (and every Tuesday night at 8pm local time). SmackDown broadcast will start on on Saturday, October 7 (and every Saturday night at 8pm local time).
Japanese fans will also be able to watch both Raw and SmackDown on-demand. As per the new deal, WWE NXT will also be available to watch on-demand in Japan via ABEMA Video.
Beginning October 1, WWE's grandest event WrestleMania's all previous editions will be available on Abema Video.
WWE superstar Shinsuke Nakamura who hails from Japan, welcomed the deal. Nakamura shared a poster of WWE Raw with "ABEMA" written on the top left corner.
Notably, other WWE wrestlers like Iyo Sky are also from Japan. WWE has a considerable fan base and its shows are greatly loved in Japan. Clearly, the latest deal is an effort to cement and widen the fan base there.