Vince McMahon has footed the $17.4 million bill from WWE’s investigation into the misconduct allegations leveled against him, which triggered his brief retirement.
The wrestling executive reimbursed the sports entertainment company on Thursday for all costs associated with the investigation through January 31, according to a report. filing with the SEC by WWE on Friday. McMahon has said that he will also cover the costs incurred by the investigation after that date.
McMahon, credited with turning WWE into an entertainment and pop culture powerhouse, voluntarily stepped away from his empire in June after the Wall Street Journal published a report on alleged hush money payments he made as Executive Director.
In all, the wrestling boss was accused of shelling out $12 million to four different employees at the wrestling network, all of whom signed agreements in exchange for their silence on the allegations of sexual misconduct.
McMahon retired a month after his resignation. But earlier this year, he leveraged his power as WWE’s majority shareholder to appoint himself and two former WWE executives to the company’s board, which subsequently named him chief executive.
His daughter Stephanie McMahon, who served as co-CEO in her father’s absence along with Nick Khan, stepped down after he rejoined the company. Her controversial return has raised concerns among investors and board members, but McMahon has defended the acquisition of her, saying it is the “only way” for the company to prosper.
“WWE is entering a critical juncture in its history with upcoming media rights negotiations coinciding with increased demand for quality content and live events across the industry and with more companies seeking to own intellectual property in their platforms,” McMahon said at the time.
“The only way WWE can fully capitalize on this opportunity is for me to return as CEO and support the management team in negotiations for our media rights and combine that with a review of strategic alternatives.”