Update on concerns over AEW's new PPV strategy

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AEW Full Gear took place on November 18, 2023, and the television numbers have revealed positive news for Tony Khan.

The news also potentially counters criticism that the PPV business could see a downward turn due to AEW running more shows.
Dave Meltzer broke down the television figures for AEW Full Gear on Wrestling Observer Radio, saying they were:

“Much better than WrestleDream. The TV numbers that I have, and because of the holiday I wouldn’t have as much detail as usual, but based on what I have, based on the number of days out and everything like that, it’s up 33% from WrestleDream. Streaming is not up as much.
“You have to remember as well that TV numbers for WrestleDream were pretty low. So it better have been up. And it was.”

He would compare the numbers to AEW x NJPW Forbidden Door II in June, noting:
“It’s not at the level of Forbidden Door, which was 145,000. It doesn’t look like it’ll be quite that big, but it’s gonna be way over 100,000. So if the mentality was that if you do, say, 10 shows a year at 100,000, you’re gonna be a lot more profitable than doing five shows a year at 140,000.
“So that was the mentality going in – it looks like you’re probably gonna be doing a lot more than 100,000 as they’ve gone monthly. All Out did over 100,000 and All Out came a week after a show (All In). So they’re holding up pretty well.”

Meltzer had previously explored the performance of AEW x NJPW Forbidden Door II compared to the May 2023 Double or Nothing PPV.
With AEW adding more PPV shows to their calendar during this year, Meltzer also looked at their PPV business in general, adding:
“Their pay-per-view business is gonna be, dollar-wise, probably by far the biggest this year, by far of any other year. Because of the more shows, and because the All In show was such a huge success on pay-per-view as well. And the shows, other than All Out and WrestleDream, were all in the 140,000 range, and this one will be a little bit below that most likely. But looks like it’s gonna do very well.
“The idea that they were down permanently because of running too many shows didn’t happen. I guess one show’s too soon to say, next show we’ll probably learn a lot more, but overall, I would consider the number pretty good. Not great, but pretty good.”

AEW WrestleDream saw the debut of Adam Copeland, formerly Edge in WWE, with that segment doing impressive social media numbers.
AEW will see out 2023 with a new PPV, AEW Worlds End, taking place on December 30 in New York.

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