ESPN+ to Debut With American Express Sponsorship

The streaming service will be available on Thursday

ESPN+ will debut on Thursday. Photo Illustration: Dianna McDougall; Source: Getty Images

Additional programming from ESPN+ will be available to fans for free during an extended 30-day trial subscription for a week after it launches.

American Express will be the official launch sponsor of ESPN+, a subscription streaming service from The Walt Disney Company’s direct-to-consumer and international group in partnership with ESPN, when it is released on Thursday.

American Express cardholders and non-cardholders will be able to sign up for the 30-day free trial. Otherwise, a typical free trial lasts for seven days and a monthly subscription costs $4.99 a month.

“It is fitting to have a renowned brand like American Express on board as the official launch sponsor for a renowned moment in our company’s history,” Ed Erhardt, president of ESPN global sales and marketing said in a statement. “Disney and ESPN continue to lead the industry in delivering innovative ad experiences and solutions for advertisers, and with ESPN+, we now have more opportunities to reach fans in new and engaging ways.”

American Express will also sponsor an episode of ESPN’s flagship program airing tonight called SportsCenter All-Access. Instead of commercials at the breaks, SportsCenter All-Access will give viewers a behind-the-scenes look at the program.

The content available on ESPN+ will include live events, on-demand content not available on ESPN’s linear TV and digital networks and hundreds of MLB, NHL and MLS games, Grand Slam tennis and Top Rank boxing.

ESPN+ will be available on a redesigned ESPN app and through ESPN.com.

CBS recently launched CBS Sports HQ and Turner Sports will launch its own direct-to-consumer live sports service this month, called Bleacher Report Live.


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@SaraJerde sara.jerde@adweek.com Sara Jerde is publishing editor at Adweek, where she covers traditional and digital publishers’ business models. She also oversees political coverage ahead of the 2020 election.
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