WWE have terminated their partnership with Panini in recent weeks, claiming that the trading card company was in breach of contract. The two companies had been working together to produce trading and digital cards since 2022 and their deal was set to run until the end of 2025.
Panini have continued selling WWE products and WWE has filed an injunction to prevent Panini from selling the promotion’s merchandise. Fanatics are expected to receive WWE’s trading card rights immediately, Darren Rovell of Action Network reported.
“JUST IN: Two weeks ago, the WWE terminated Panini for breach of contract with 2+ years left. The WWE says Panini, which is still selling product, is now in violation and will seek an injunction. Fanatics, which had deal starting in ‘26, is expected to get rights immediately,” Rovell tweeted.
Panini have filed a lawsuit against WWE for terminating the contract.
The lawsuit states: “Nonetheless, with no warning whatsoever, on August 28, 2023, Panini received a letter dated August 25, 2023, from WWE, purporting to terminate the Agreement for a purported breach of the terms of the Agreement. Panini seeks declaratory judgment that WWE’s purported termination was invalid.”
WWE claimed within the letter that Panini had not engaged in “good faith efforts” to use the WWE license to “exploit” digital trading cards and physical trading card games. Panini has denied they breached the contract, stating in their lawsuit that digital trading cards have been available since the launch of WWE Prizm in April 2022. The trading card game “Box Wars/Pack Wars” is also playable with WWE trading cards, the lawsuit states.
It was further stated: “Panini also noted that WWE and Panini had been working together under the Agreement for more than a year since any alleged breach would have occurred, and thus any right to terminate from the April 1 or June 1, 2022 dates had been waived and that WWE was estopped from asserting a right to terminate with no notice after having accepted Panini’s performance for an extended period of time with no complaint.”
Within the letter of termination, WWE demanded immediate payment of $5.625 million, which Panini has disputed.