WWE Slim Jim LA Knight Bianca Belair Vince McMahon LA Knight Screen grab: Slim Jim

Dating back to the glory days of “Macho Man” Randy Savage, few sponsors have been as synonymous with WWE as Slim Jim.

But in the wake of a new lawsuit accusing WWE founder Vince McMahon of sexually assaulting and trafficking a former employee, the meat snack and jerky brand has now paused its relationship with the sports entertainment giant ahead of Saturday’s Royal Rumble event.

“Slim Jim values integrity and respect in all of our partnerships. Given the recent disturbing allegations against Vince McMahon, at this time we’ve decided to pause our promotional activities with WWE,” Slim Jim said in a statement, according to POST Wrestling’s John Pollock. “This decision reflects our commitment to our brand values and responsibility to our community. We will continue to monitor the situation and base our future engagements on our values and what’s best for our brand.”

News of Slim Jim halting its WWE sponsorship was first reported by WrestleVotes. The social media account also noted that “it is yet to be determined if they will remain partners in the future.”

Slim Jim’s decision to pause its sponsorship with WWE is significant. In addition to a new sweepstakes that had just been announced on Thursday, the company has sponsored various forms of WWE content over the years (including a battle royal match at last year’s SummerSlam) and figured to maintain a significant presence in the lead up to WrestleMania 40 in April.

It will interesting to see if any of WWE’s other sponsors for the Royal Rumble — which include Cricket Wireless, PlayStation and the Suicide Squad: Kill the Justice League video game — follow suit. Additionally, Fightful Select’s Sean Ross Sapp reported that at least one other potential “major” sponsor is now no longer interested in working with WWE following the lawsuit.

While the 78-year-old McMahon is no longer involved in WWE’s day-to-day operations, he remains the chairman of TKO Group Holdings. That’s the parent company that was formed by WWE’s merger with UFC.

In addition to the heinous accusations against McMahon, the lawsuit raises obvious questions about the work environment at WWE. And it raises questions around the company’s initial investigation into his misconduct in 2022.

Update: McMahon resigned from TKO’s board of directors Friday night:

UPDATE (11:02 a.m. ET): Slim Jim reportedly has already ended their pause on sponsorships with WWE. WrestleVotes, who reported the company’s initial pause first, emerged Sunday morning to report that the company is back on as a main sponsor for the Royal Rumble premium live event on Saturday evening in St. Petersburg, Florida.

[John Pollock on X]

About Ben Axelrod

Ben Axelrod is a veteran of the sports media landscape, having most recently worked for NBC's Cleveland affiliate, WKYC. Prior to his time in Cleveland, he covered Ohio State football and the Big Ten for outlets including Cox Media Group, Bleacher Report, Scout and Rivals.