ESPN+ ‘gains more than one million subscribers in first five months’

ESPN+, Disney’s sports streaming service, has gained more than one million paying subscribers in its first five months, the company announced on Thursday.

The OTT service – which aims to attract ‘cord cutters’ and ‘cord nevers’ – costs $49.99 a year, which amounts to roughly $50m (€42m) in new revenue.

“Reaching one million paid subscribers is an important milestone,” said Kevin Mayer, the Walt Disney Company direct-to-consumer and international chairman. “The future is bright and we believe growth will continue as we add features, distribution partners and more exclusive content in the coming months.”

It is unclear how exactly the one million subscription figure breaks down. In August, Disney merged ESPN Insider, a separate subscription service, into ESPN+, boosting the number of subscribers. But the company says the “vast majority” of ESPN+ customers are new.

Disney shares rose 1.1 per cent after the announcement.