Operates the nation's leading sports cable networks.
Bristol, CT 06010
President: John Skipper
Division of Disney Corp.
ESPN operates the leading cable network devoted to sports. The network's properties include ESPN on ABC, six domestic cable television networks (ESPN, launched in 1979; ESPN2; ESPN Classic; ESPNEWS; ESPN Deportes; ESPNU), ESPN HD, ESPN2 HD, ESPNEWS HD and EPSPNU HD (high-definition simulcast services of ESPN, ESPN2, ESPNEWS and ESPNU, respectively), ESPN Regional Television, ESPN International (34 international networks and syndication), ESPN Radio, ESPN.com, ESPN The Magazine, ESPN Enterprises, ESPN PPV, ESPN Zones (sports-themed restaurants), and growing online businesses including ESPN3.com and Watch ESPN.
Based in Bristol, CT, with 4,000 employees (7,000 worldwide) ESPN Plaza includes 900,000 square feet in 18 buildings on 123 acres (116 contiguous), with additional office space (400,000 sq. ft.) rented nearby.
In May, ESPN reportedly cut 400 jobs to reduce expenses.
ESPN is 80 percent owned by ABC, Inc., which is an indirect subsidiary of The Walt Disney Company. The Hearst Corporation holds a 20 percent interest in ESPN.
ESPN is the leading cable network for sports programming available in 99 million homes in the U.S. Its signature program is SportsCenter, which features highlights and features about the day's sports events.
The channels are highly profitable due to fees from cable companies and advertisers looking to reach ESPN's coveted male audience.
Most major sports including football, basketball, baseball and college sports can be seen on ESPN networks.
The network has a deal with College Football's Bowl Championship Series to air the bowl championship games including the Orange, Fiesta and Sugar Bowls from 2011-2014.
ESPN has been criticized for driving up the price of sports programming and also cable TV bills. The average cable TV household pays $5.15 per month for ESPN regardless whether they actually watch sports programming.
In 2011, ESPN extended its deal with the NFL to air Monday Night Football until 2021 for a reported $15 billion.
In August 2012, ESPN came to terms with Major League Baseball to extend broadcasting rights from 2014-2021 for a reported $5.6 billion. ESPN will be able to broadcast games with the new deal without blackouts in local markets.
ESPN (originally Entertainment & Sports Programming Network) was the idea of a Connecticut man, Bill Rasmussen, in 1978. A former sportscaster, Bill's original idea was a sports network for Connecticut. As soon as he investigated the idea, he discovered that it would be no more expensive to be a national service. Needing land, he bought less than an acre, sight unseen, from the city of Bristol in a swampy industrial park on the edge of town. Ironically, when the satellite company visited, they complemented him on his choice, as the topography to the west provided a natural buffer to interference without inhibiting any outgoing signals. Construction on the first building soon began, and ESPN debuted on September 7, 1979.
SportsCenter, the network's flagship sports news show, also made its debut September 7, 1979 as ESPN's first show.
ESPNU, a network devoted to college sports, was launched on March 4, 2005.
ESPN began broadcasting Monday Night Football in 2006 after parent company ABC decided to stop carrying the games due to financial reasons. ESPN has an eight-year contract for Monday Night Football with the NFL.
In 2010, most of its ESPNZone sports-themed restaurants located in Chicago, Baltimore, Washington DC, Las Vegas and New York were closed. Two restaurants in Los Angeles and Anaheim remain open.
Below are benefits offered which usually begin on the date of hire.
- Medical Coverage
- Vision Coverage
- Dental Coverage
- Employee Life Insurance
- Dependent Life Insurance
- Employee Accidental Death & Dismemberment (AD&D) Insurance
- Long-Term Disability (LTD) Benefit
- Flexible Spending Accounts (FSA)
- Short Term Disability Benefits
- Savings and Investment Plan
- Retirement Plan
- Employee Stock Purchase Plan
- Holidays/Floater Days
- Unpaid Leave
- Long-Term Care Insurance (LTC) Plan
- Direct Deposit
- Credit Union (American Broadcast Employees Federal Credit Union)
- Educational Reimbursement Program
- Employee Assistance Program
- Employee Discount Program
- Matching Grant Program
The Bristol campus also features a 5,000 square-foot health and fitness facility.
Updated May 22, 2013
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