As cable subscriber counts have dwindled in recent years, many analysts have been focused on the effect upon ESPN and its parent entity The Walt Disney Company (DIS). The reason for this is because the monthly channel cost for ESPN dwarfs everything else in the cable field. ESPN charges its cable distributors $7.21 per month for each subscriber, whereas Fox Sports 1 only charges $1.10. Fox Sports 1 can lose a bit over six subscribers in order for the shareholders of 21st Century Fox to sustain the same absolute dollar loss that Disney shareholders experience when just one ESPN subscriber is lost.
With 85 million subscribers, ESPN currently brings in $7.3 billion from subscriber fees. It also brings in another $3 billion from advertising.
On the expense side, ESPN pays $2 billion this year for Monday Night Football, $1.5 billion to show NBA basketball games, $700 million for baseball, and … Read the rest of this article!