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ESPN Is in Trouble and It’s All Because of Cord Cutters

espn-college-gameday-clemsonESPN is struggling because their subscribership is dropping as people cut cable or cut back on subscriptions. Five million fewer people subscribe to cable than did just five years ago.

Back in October 2015 ESPN had to lay off several hundred people, totaling 4% of their staff, because of high costs and fewer people subscribing to cable TV.

According to the Wall Street Journal, ESPN earns about $6.04 per cable subscriber. So that means ESPN earned about $30,200,000 less every month than just a few years ago. They also predict that by 2018 ESPN will be getting about $8.37 per subscriber, bringing the lost revenue to $41,850,000 a month in 2018.

Recently ESPN hinted at an online streaming service directly from ESPN. Back in July 2015 Bob Iger the chairman and chief executive officer of The Walt Disney Company, which owns ESPN, said they “eventually” plan and that there is an “inevitability” to having a direct-to-consumer subscription service for ESPN, but he stopped well short of any commitments or timeline.

So why is this good for cord cutters? As more people cancel cable, networks like ESPN receive more pressure to find new income by selling directly to cord cutters and cord nevers. At this rate, we could be seeing an OTT option from ESPN sooner than we could have ever expected a year ago.

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4 Responses to ESPN Is in Trouble and It’s All Because of Cord Cutters

  1. Avatar
    scottalias November 24, 2015 at 2:02 pm #

    Just sell WatchESPN as a standalone app. I’m switching to SlingTV before next season, but I like having a game on a second screen and I don’t mind paying for that service.

  2. Avatar
    Hex November 25, 2015 at 12:18 am #

    The $6.04 that ESPN gets per subscriber is per month. Your calculation is based per year. So ESPN would be making about $30 million less per month, not per year!

    • Avatar
      Admin November 25, 2015 at 7:30 am #

      Great Catch!

  3. Avatar
    Chad November 27, 2015 at 12:25 pm #

    And my Jethro mathematics calculates…

    ding ding ding zing……

    Ought and Ought equals Ought. zing…

    30 million by 12 months equals 360 million zing….