As previously reported, WWE terminated their deal with Panini due to a breach of contract. Fanatics is expected to get WWE’s trading cards, though Panini was set to have the rights until the end of 2025 under their deal with the company. Their attempt to get a temporary restraining order against Panini was then denied. Panini is suing WWE, as they’re aiming to keep the deal in effect.
Per Brandon Thurston of Wrestlenomics, WWE filed an injection against Panini on October 12 in an effort to get them to stop selling the company’s trading cards.
The filing notes that Panini allegedly told WWE in 2022 that they would potentially merge with Fanatics, but the deal fell apart in spring 2023. In April 2023, Panini lost more than 35 employees, who resigned, and many of them served the company’s relationship with WWE. The latter alleged that the new employees assigned to work with them were less experienced.
Additionally, the filing alleges that Panini ran behind on inventory, providing purchase orders, and responding to WWE’s routine requests. The latter then claimed that, in August, they found that Panini failed to uphold their contractual obligations, as they did not make prototypes or get new products out for sale. Panini did not make any trading card games or digital trading cards, so WWE argued that they were entitled to terminate the deal on August 25. As a result, the latter claimed that this should cause Panini to stop selling their products, which they have not.
WrestleZone will provide more information as it becomes available.