BTIG Research had the study conducted by consumer marketing company Civic Science, which surveyed 1,582 consumers. Eighty-seven percent of these respondents subscribed to multichannel TV packages.
Fifty-six percent of consumers surveyed said they would remove ESPN/ESPN2 -- 60% female respondents and 49% male respondents. BTIG says the results did not vary by age group, with Millennials, Gen-xers and boomers reporting similar results.
Media analysts have been concerned that ESPN could see some additional steep subscriber declines.
The cable sports network had witnessed subscriber drops, resulting a drop in parent company Walt Disney’s stock price and causing a ripple effect for other media companies.
For some time, Bob Iger, chairman/CEO of Walt Disney, says ESPN is prepared to sell direct-to-consumer “over the top” digital network packages.
The study says only 6% would subscribe to ESPN/ESPN for $20 a month under a direct-to-consumer model; 85% say they would not pay for this package; and 9% were not sure.
Rich Greenfield, media analyst for BTIG Research, writes that even if ESPN gets double these levels in subscribers buying an OTT package, it would still cause some dramatic revenue declines.
“If 15% paid for an ESPN/ESPN2 DTC [direct-to-consumer] offering at $20/month, that yields $4.1 billion in revenue, dramatically below the nearly $9 billion the two channels generate from the legacy MVPD [multi-video program distributor] ecosystem.”