ESPN Scales Back X Games; Cancels Events Outside of U.S.
ESPN today announced it will not continue with X Games events in Barcelona, Munich, Foz do Iguaçu, Brazil and Tignes, France.
“We are proud to have run world-class competitions for both the athletes and spectators; however the overall economics of these events do not provide a sustainable future path,” the company said in a statement. “The company remains fully committed to the X Games brand and its full-scale competitions in Aspen, Colorado and Austin, Texas – its newest host city – and we will continue to distribute these premier events around the world.”
ESPN owns the X Games and had announced the international expansion in 2011. It had organized the events for one year and had two years left on its contract.
The U.S. X Games, which take place in Austin, Texas, in the summer and Aspen, Colorado, in winter, will continue. ESPN started the competition in the summer of 1995 in Rhode Island.
ESPN added it did not see a “sustainable path for economics of these events.”
Regarding the related job cuts, ESPN said: “Changes of this nature require difficult decisions, including the elimination of some roles. Under the two-event model ESPN will require a smaller workforce to stage and support the events.”