Tony Khan has explained that the intricacies of AEW's sponsorship deal with Ric Flair's Wooooo Energy mean that Flair is effectively paying the promotion for his appearances, rather than the other way around.
Speaking with the New York Post's Joseph Staszewski, Khan stated that Wooooo Energy had approached AEW about a potential sponsorship deal prior to Ric appearing on AEW TV. This reported "high-paying" agreement means that not only is AEW being paid to advertise Wooooo Energy, but to feature Flair as well.
“We’re not paying Ric Flair; Ric Flair is essentially paying us. We’re getting paid by Wooooo Energy for all of his appearances, so we’re collecting revenue from them.”
Wooooo Energy has quickly become one of AEW's most prominent partners, with the brand's logo now advertised at either side of the entrance ramp during television tapings.
On Flair's talent contract, an AEW source claimed that this is a separate deal with Khan's group outside of the sponsorship. Flair is compensated for that work, according to the spokesperson, though Khan's comments would indicate that the number isn't as high as what AEW is receiving from Wooooo.
Flair debuted for AEW on 25 October's episode of Dynamite. The following week, it was confirmed he had signed a multi-year deal.