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Living to Serve the Sports Fan

Sep 6, 2004  •  Post A Comment

There are lots of places to watch sports, but as it celebrates its 25th anniversary Sept. 7, ESPN has connected with sports fans like no one else. The company’s core network is riding a streak of 10 consecutive quarters of audience increase.

The ESPN name is No. 1 in “brand resonance” among men, according to a study by Knowledge Networks SR. Its two largest networks, ESPN and ESPN2, deliver more than 8,700 hours per year of original programming.

ESPN is also enjoying a worldwide expansion that has extended its reach to twice as many homes internationally as domestically. Through it all, the network’s mission has remained simple. “We live to serve the sports fan,” said George Bodenheimer, ESPN’s president since 1998 and a 24-year veteran of the company. “We will stay focused on that.”

Or, as sportscaster Lee Leonard promised viewers on the inaugural telecast, “If you’re a fan … what you’ll see in the minutes, hours and days to follow may convince you that you’ve gone to sports heaven.”

See: ESPN’s 25th Anniversary: Building a TV Sports Empire