The majority of UFC events stream live on ESPN+ and it was recently revealed by Disney, which owns ESPN+, that the streaming service has 6.6 million subscribers.
--BREAKING: Disney releases paid subscribers numbers for all of its DTCI streaming services with earnings $DIS— Sara Fischer (@sarafischer) February 4, 2020
Total Hulu 30.4
Hulu SVOD Only 27.2
Hulu Live TV + SVOD 3.2 pic.twitter.com/d8XyLmUTem
However, according to Eric Fischer of SportsBusiness Group, citing Disney CEO Bob Iger, the number of subscribers for ESPN+ is actually 7.6 million, with the 1 million subscriber number being boosted due to the return of McGregor:
And Iger says the current number for ESPN+ is actually 7.6 million (the 6.6 million was at the end of the quarter), as another bump has come in largely thanks to the McGregor fight.— Eric Fisher (@EricFisherSBG) February 4, 2020
It should be noted that just because there is a growth in the subscriber base, it doesn’t mean that the streaming service is turning a major profit.
“The increase in operating loss at ESPN+ was primarily due to higher programming costs, primarily for Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) rights, and an increase in marketing spend, partially offset by subscriber revenue growth and UFC pay-per-view fees,” stated the official Disney report (via John Nash).