Forbes magazine published an article written by David Bixenspan over Wrestlemania weekend which announced the top 10 highest paid wrestlers of 2019 from their findings. Forbes delved into WWE accounts and their proxy statement released at the beginning of the year to find these amounts.
WWE pay their wrestlers a ‘downside guarantee’ that will pay them a certain fee no matter what position on the card they place. There are clauses also included in wrestlers contracts such as if a superstar gets injured, WWE can extend their contract by the amount of time they were unavailable. For instance this happened to Brodie Lee aka Luke Harper in WWE. WWE superstars also get part of the live attendance gate and merchandise sales with their likeness on. Forbes magazine details how each superstars are paid
‘performance fees based on a formula tied to where they appear in each event. Main event matches naturally pay more than those on the undercard. As spelled out in publicly available contracts, talent also gets a piece of merchandise sales, including 5% of direct sales at venues and on the WWE website, plus 25% of revenue from the sales of products from third-party licensees. Performance fees vary wildly by the size of the event and the profile of the match, with non-televised events paying the lowest ($500) and bouts in stadium supershows, such as WrestleMania, paying well into seven figures’ – Forbes magazine April 3rd 2020
Brock Lesnar is the highest paid performer on the roster earning a staggering €10million. Lesnar is paid per appearance by WWE but also gets a set fee that allows WWE to have exclusive rights of his image. Becky Lynch is the highest paid female and is earning big money thanks to her new deal which is rumoured to be a €1million downside guarantee plus a wrestlemania main event would have boosted her earnings.
Paul ‘Triple H’ Levesque, his wife Stephanie McMahon and brother in law Shane McMahon are all listed and their total earnings are listed on WWE Proxy statement they release in according with SEC regulations. Both Stephanie and Triple H is earnings are from their positions in the board room of WWE plus their performing earnings.
To note the list only includes active wrestlers. The list doesn’t include John Cena who reportedly earned €7 million in 2018 and Ronda Rousey who left earlier in the year. Rousey was reportedly earning around €1.5 million guarantee plus bonuses. Also it doesn’t include the €15 million Tyson Fury got paid for his match against Braun Strowman at Super Showdown in Saudi Arabia.
The Top 10 WWE highest paid performers
1. Brock Lesnar €10 million
2. Roman Reigns €5 million
3. Randy Orton €4.1 million
I4. Seth Rollins €4 million
5. Triple H €3.3 million
6. Becky Lynch €3.1 million
7. Bill Goldberg €3 million
8. Shane McMahon €2.1 million
9. Stephanie McMahon €2 million
10. Braun Strowman €1.9 million