WWE Payback Sets New Gate, Viewership, & Merchandise Records

wwe payback
Photo Credit: WWE

WWE continues to outdo itself.

Following the success of WWE SummerSlam, WWE pivoted its focus to the return of the Payback-themed event. This year’s Payback emanated from PPG Paints Arena in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, marking the city’s first premium live event in over five years. The 2023 Payback show featured six matches, along with a special edition of “The Grayson Waller Effect” with Cody Rhodes as the special guest. 16-time world champion John Cena also hosted the event.

Today, WWE announced that Payback had set new records in multiple departments, including gate, viewership, and merchandise.

In terms of revenue, Payback is now the highest-grossing WWE event ever held in the city of Pittsburgh. The 2023 PLE also boasted the largest gate of any Payback ever (12,468 in attendance), which is 13% higher than the previous record set in 2016, when the company hosted the event in Chicago. Viewership for the show was also up 36% in comparison to the prior record set in 2016.

Social Buzz

Within the merchandise department, this year’s Payback soared to the top of the Payback history books, breaking the all-time event merchandise record. Per WWE’s press release, merchandise sales, which were coordinated in partnership with Fanatics, rose 182% from the previous record set in 2017.

In analyzing the social media statistics, the 2023 iteration also became the most-viewed social Payback of all time, generating a combined 146 million social views, which is up 44% from the 2020 showcase that held the record beforehand. In terms of social media buzz, one moment in particular drew over seven million social views in one day across all the company’s platforms, making it the most-viewed moment of the event. That moment, of course, saw Cody Rhodes announce Jey Uso as the newest member of the WWE RAW roster.

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