New Japan Pro-Wrestling business update following Bushiroad annual report FY2020

New Japan Pro-Wrestling’s parent company, Bushiroad, Inc., released its annual report on Monday for its fiscal year ending July 31, 2020.

Revenues for Bushiroad’s sports division, largely supported by New Japan, were down slightly.

  • FY2018: 4.891 billion yen = $47 million USD
  • FY2019: 5.333 billion yen = $51 million USD
  • FY2020: 5.021 billion yen = $48 million USD

Bushiroad sports division revenue trends are shown here in yellow.

Bushiroad’s report stated that NJPW World has 100,000 paid subscribers. This is about the same as the service had one year prior.

Approximate known data points about NJPW World subscribers are shown here.

The report also highlights that New Japan drew 70,071 attendees over two days at the Tokyo Dome for Wrestle Kingdom 14 in January, that New Japan established in November a U.S. incorporation associated with their strategy to do business globally and in the U.S., and that in December Bushiroad acquired women’s wrestling promotion Stardom.

As expected, a study of New Japan’s official website reports of event attendance shows attendance was down in FY2020. Due to the Covid-19 pandemic, events from March 1 until July 11 were cancelled or had no fans in attendance. Events from July 11 and after have only been allowed with limited capacity.

A pro forma comparison of attendance that excludes the months where events were affected by Covid, and therefore looking only at the months of August through February, shows total attendance was on track to exceed prior years, largely related to an increase in the number of events.

From August 2019 to February 2020, New Japan’s total attendance — Wrestle Kingdom excluded — was up 12% over the months of the previous year. New Japan ran 100 events in that period in FY2020 but only 86 in FY2019. Consequently, average attendance from August 2019 to February 2020 is down 3% from the year prior. Illustrated below:

It’s likely we’ll see a specific report from New Japan about it’s own revenue. FY2019 revenue for the company is show on the New Japan official website in its company profile page. In FY2019, New Japan says it generated 5.4 billion yen in revenue, or $52 million USD. That’s New Japan’s highest grossing year in its history.

From New Japan Pro-Wrestling annual revenue, 1980-2018

A balance sheet for the fiscal year may appear on the official website domain sometime in October that shows net income. In FY2019, New Japan reported net income of 493 million yen, or $4.7 million USD. For comparison, WWE in the calendar year of 2019 reported $960 million in revenue and $77 million in net income.

Bushiroad reported a profitable year for FY2020, with the equivalent of $15 million in net income on revenues of $316 million.

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