By Antonio Rubio Atto On 08/21/2023
At the beginning of the year, PROGRESS Wrestling announced that it was working on a series of moves to continue providing visibility to its product after WWE Network ceased acquiring its multimedia content. As a result, the company announced the launch of the DEMAND PROGRESS CLUB, its streaming platform.
Meanwhile, PROGRESS Wrestling continues to share the good news with its fans. which is that today, The company announced that it has secured an investment from the International North American Stock Exchange (IENA). In a move that will help them expand throughout North America.
And then, we leave you with the official statement from PROGRESS Wrestling:
American investment in wrestling progress.
This year the world of professional wrestling witnessed the largest business merger and investment in its history, as WWE and Endeavor, owners of the UFC, united in a deal worth up to $22 billion.
This also served as the main backdrop for the rise of All Elite Wrestling (AEW), owned by the Khan family, owners, among other assets, of Premier League football club Fulham, and promoters of what would soon become them. It will be the UK’s biggest wrestling event in over 30 years, with tickets sold out at Wembley Stadium on August 27.
Since the UK glory days of Big Daddy and giant haystacks, Professional wrestling appears to be experiencing some boomThis seems to be confirmed by the large foreign investment in what is considered Europe’s main private promotion, Progress Wrestling.
Co-owners Lee McAteer and Martyn Best have just completed a major US investment from the International North American Exchange (IENA), the world leader in cultural exchange programs to and from the United States.
McAteer and Best are co-directors of another English football club, Tranmere Rovers, and have combined their love of sport, entertainment and business with the acquisition of PROGRESS in late 2021. The recovery from the shock of the pandemic has seen sold-out shows across the UK, and activity in Dubai, Canada and the United States Ambitious plans are set for 2024, including the launch of his own wrestling content channel, DEMAND PROGRESS PLUS..
In the words of McAteer: “Martin and I have always strived to bring the professional word to professional wrestling and part of that means good work practices, ambition and good partners. I’ve worked with IENA in the past and have had a great relationship with its CEO, Matt Buczek..
Even though he’s a reformed Yorkshireman living in the US, Matt wanted to maintain our working relationship, and when Martin and I shared our vision for PROGRESS, Matt was able to really relate to his knowledge of the success of WWE and AEW, and Although it was evident on a much smaller scale, he could see the enthusiasm Martin and I had.
Matt, and the investment from IENA will support the plans we have for growing PROGRESS Wrestling and especially our newly launched DEMAND PROGRESS PLUS service.”
Martin added: “Having met Matt, I can see he has a clear enthusiasm for wrestling and our plans are to build interest outside the UK. IENA is a major player in the cultural exchange sector, and I am sure his business acumen will be invaluable as we grow globally.“.
From Matt’s perspective: “I have known and worked with Lee McAteer for many years, dating back to his time at AmeriCamp, and I know he has great energy and ambition to grow any business. I have been looking for areas where we can maintain our serious working relationship , And The combination of Lee, Martin, myself, and my partners’ collective expertise makes for an interesting cocktail.
Having lived and worked in the United States for over 20 years, I have seen the massive popularity of WWE, and with PROGRESS recently becoming a media partner of WWE and seen on Peacock TV, It was clear that the growth opportunities were very strong“.
This investment is an opportunity for PROGRESS Wrestling to expand into North America, have an office in the New York area, and diversify its wrestling horizons into new territories with a central focus on North America for growth.