ESPN Sells X Games to Private Equity Firm

Published: McLane Middleton
November 1, 2022

Last week, ESPN announced the sale of a controlling stake in its X Games sports event franchise to MSP Sports Capital, a New York-based private equity firm.  ESPN will retain a minority position in the X Games, while MSP Sports Capital will take over daily operational control.  As part of the deal, ESPN “will continue to serve as the [X Games’] U.S. linear broadcast partner.”

MSP Sports Capital has hired Steven Flisler to serve as CEO of the X Games.  Flisler previously served as the Vice President of original content at Twitch, a leading livestreaming service platform, and in various leadership positions at NBCUniversal.  Additionally, world-famous skateboarder Tony Hawk will join an advisory board related to the post-sale X Games.

MSP Sports Capital was founded by industry veterans Jeff Moorad and Jahm Najafi and its other portfolio companies include McLaren Racing.