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Report – How Much AEW Spends On Talent Salaries Annually

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AEW’s commitment to recruiting and investing in top talent has significantly impacted the professional wrestling industry.

The Wrestling Observer Newsletter reports that talent at AEW is compensated through annual contracts, contributing to a reported total talent payroll of approximately $104 million annually. While the precise figure may be slightly lower than $104 million, it is likely close to that.

It has been speculated that AEW would require at least $125 million per year from Warner Brothers Discovery to break even.

According to The SmackDown Hotel, AEW currently has 192 active wrestlers. Based on the reported total talent payroll of $104 million, the average compensation for each wrestler would be approximately $541,666 per year. This is notably high due to significant payouts to wrestlers such as Kazuchika Okada, who reportedly receives multiple million-dollar paychecks annually.

Notable contracts at AEW include Okada’s three-year deal valued at an estimated $13.5 million, Mercedes Mone’s contract exceeding $10 million annually for a term of 3-5 years with a potential opt-out in the third year, and Will Ospreay’s multi-million-dollar annual contract spanning more than three years.

In comparison, WWE Superstars on the main roster are said to receive a minimum base salary of $250,000, according to statements by Triple H.

The disclosed salaries for top WWE Superstars reportedly range from $8.5 million to $2 million annually, demonstrating a notable variance at the top end of the pay scale.

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