SBD/January 9, 2014/Research and Ratings

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  • ESPN Audience In '13 Lowest Since '08; MLB Net, NFL Net See Record Viewership

    ESPN averaged 2.21 million viewers in primetime during '13 and 975,000 viewers on a total-day basis, marking the net's lowest figures since '08. ESPN was down 6% in primetime compared to '12, while down 4% for total-day viewership. Despite the drop, ESPN was third among all cable nets in primetime, behind only USA Network and Disney Channel. The net ranked 10th overall in total-day audience. NFL Network and MLB Network both saw record primetime and total-day audiences in '13. NFL Net was boosted by another record-setting season of NFL regular-season game telecasts. MLB Net had a similar record-breaking season for its regular-season game telecasts. The net's primetime audience was up 33% and total-day was up 28%. The net also had total-day audience records in 11 of 12 months. Golf Channel had its third-straight year of record-setting total-day viewership. The net set records in Q1, Q2 and Q3, while breaking monthly records in January, February, March, April, May, August and October. Every major tour also saw year-over-year gains on Golf Channel -- including record viewership for the Web.com, Champions and European Tours. NBCSN benefited from the return of hockey in the fall. Primetime viewership for the net in '13 was up 15%, while total-day was up 57%. FS1, which launched on Aug. 17 on what was the old Speed channel, was up 22% in primetime compared to what Speed averaged alone in '12. Total day audience for FS1 was also up 2%.

    CABLE SPORTS NET PRIMETIME VIEWERSHIP
    NETWORK
    '13 (000)
    '12 (000)
    '11 (000)
    '10 (000)
    '09 (000)
    '08 (000)
    ESPN
    2,210
    2,343
    2,342
    2,400
    2,303
    2,069
    ESPN2
    489
    476
    541
    634
    693
    644
    NFL Network
    406
    381
    285
    258
    224
    176
    NBCSN
    280
    244
    293
    279
    307
    279
    FS1/Speed*
    246
    202
    237
    228
    280
    274
    Golf Channel
    142
    139
    152
    119
    147
    131
    MLB Network
    141
    106
    109
    n/a
    n/a
    n/a
    NBA TV
    118
    123
    80
    n/a
    n/a
    n/a
    ESPNews
    105
    102
    95
    87
    84
    85
    FS2/Fuel TV*
    37
    40
    n/a
    n/a
    n/a
    n/a
    CABLE SPORTS NET TOTAL-DAY VIEWERSHIP
    NETWORK
    '13 (000)
    '12 (000)
    '11 (000)
    '10 (000)
    '09 (000)
    '08 (000)
    ESPN
    975
    1,020
    1,037
    1,083
    1,004
    921
    ESPN2
    277
    285
    310
    337
    333
    325
    NFL Network
    163
    152
    128
    114
    97
    80
    NBCSN
    163
    104
    95
    98
    120
    107
    FS1/Speed*
    123
    121
    139
    138
    160
    150
    Golf Channel
    110
    96
    91
    71
    88
    77
    MLB Network
    68
    53
    49
    n/a
    n/a
    n/a
    ESPNews
    65
    67
    61
    64
    64
    66
    NBA TV
    55
    60
    38
    n/a
    n/a
    n/a
    FS2/Fuel TV*
    23
    21
    n/a
    n/a
    n/a
    n/a







    NOTES: The measuring period for the most-recent Nielsen calendar was Dec. 31, 2012 through Dec. 29, 2013. The prior year was Dec. 26, 2011 through Dec. 30, 2012. * = Speed became FS1 on Aug. 17, and Fuel TV became FS2.

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