ESPN shuts down Grantland as it struggles with a grim financial outlook

See the original posting on The Verge

ESPN announced this afternoon that it was shutting down Grantland, the website founded by former ESPN star Bill Simmons, which mixed literary sports writing with wider coverage of politics and culture. The move will impact around 40 employees, and comes on the heels of cuts across ESPN that laid off another 300 employees. Why is ESPN, the reining king of cable television and still a very profitable enterprise, suddenly cutting its staff to the bone? The answer is that its long-term outlook has shifted dramatically in the last few years, leaving it with a declining subscriber base and ballooning content costs.

The current trouble at ESPN dates back to 2012, when the company was renegotiating its contracts with cable providers. It wanted…

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