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Photo; Marc Pfitzenreuter/Getty Images

Peacock and WWE announced a multi-year agreement Monday that gives Peacock exclusive streaming rights to WWE Network in the U.S.

Why it matters: The deal, reportedly worth over $1 billion, will help bolster Peacock's programming to better compete with the slew of new streaming companies that have launched in the past year.

The big picture: WWE, unlike most sports, managed to stay afloat even at the outset of the pandemic. In April, Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis said WWE programming was an essential business and allowed matches to continue despite rising COVID-19 cases.

Details: Peacock will launch WWE Network on March 18. In turn, WWE Network will shut down its streaming service in the U.S. and shift its programming over to Peacock.

  • More than 17,000 hours of new, original, and library WWE Network programming will eventually be available on-demand.
  • All live pay-per-view events, including "WrestleMania" and "SummerSlam; Fastlane," will be available first via pay-per-view to stream on Peacock on Sunday, March 21.
  • The deal also means that original shows like "Steve Austin Broken Skull Sessions" and in-ring shows like "WWE 205 Live" will be on Peacock exclusively, as will replays of "Raw" and "SmackDown."
  • All WWE Network archives will also be included on-demand.
  • WWE said that starting in 2022, it will bring one signature documentary exclusively to Peacock.

Be smart: For wrestling fans, this is a win. The WWE Network will be made available via Peacock for $4.99 monthly with ads, as opposed to the $9.99 monthly ad-free subscription that the WWE Network currently costs. Still, if a super-fan wants to watch WWE without ads on Peacock, it will cost them $9.99.

What they're saying: “NBCUniversal has a long-standing relationship with WWE that began nearly 30 years ago with Monday Night Raw on USA," said Rick Cordella, executive vice president and chief revenue officer of Peacock.

  • Nick Khan, president and chief revenue officer of WWE, said Peacock will enable WWE to showcase its most important events, including WrestleMania.

What's next: The companies plan to share more details on managing customer accounts closer to the Peacock launch in March.

Go deeper

Police officers' immunity from lawsuits is getting a fresh look

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

Nearly a year after the death of George Floyd, advocates of changes in police practices are launching new moves to limit or eliminate legal liability protections for officers accused of excessive force.

Why it matters: Revising or eliminating qualified immunity — the shield police officers have now — could force officers accused of excessive force to personally face civil penalties in addition to their departments. But such a change could intensify a nationwide police officer shortage, critics say. 

The U.S. coronavirus vaccines aren't all the same

Illustration: Eniola Odetunde/Axios

The U.S. now has three COVID-19 vaccines, and public health officials are quick — and careful — to say there’s no bad option. But their effectiveness, manufacturing and distribution vary.

Why it matters: Any of the authorized vaccines are much better than no vaccine, especially for people at high risk of severe coronavirus infections. But their differences may fuel perceptions of inequity, and raise legitimate questions about the best way to use each one.

Erica Pandey, author of @Work
2 hours ago - Economy & Business

The future of workplace benefits

Illustration: Annelise Capossela/Axios

The pandemic exposed how workplaces across America are inhospitable to parents. But it could also spur companies to make changes.

The big picture: Well over a million parents have left their jobs due to child care responsibilities during the pandemic. Now, companies — large and small — are attempting to reimagine workplace benefits and add flexibility to help those parents come back.