Bloomberg News

Fox Cancels Cowell’s ‘X Factor’ After Conclusion of Third Season

February 08, 2014

Fox Broadcasting canceled the Simon Cowell-led TV talent show “The X Factor” after completing the program’s third season.

Cowell, a judge and one of the show’s producers, will continue to appear on the U.K. version of the program, the 21st Century Fox Inc. (FOXA:US) network and the show’s creators said yesterday in a statement.

Fox is dropping “The X Factor” in a crowded market for reality television. The network had sought to build a strong September talent show around Cowell, the sharp-tongued former judge on “American Idol.” “Idol” airs in the second half of the TV season, starting in January.

The show struggled to build an audience while NBC’s “The Voice” thrived. The audience for “The Voice” now rivals Fox’s “American Idol,” which popularized the genre. Cowell, 54, left as a judge on “Idol” after the 2010 season to start “X Factor,” a popular format outside the U.S.

“X Factor” aired on Wednesdays and Thursdays. In the TV season that began in September, the show averaged 6.92 million viewers an episode, according to Nielsen data. “The Voice” averages 14.6 million.

Fox, controlled by Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Rupert Murdoch, rose 0.3 percent to $32.24 yesterday in New York. The Class A shares have declined 8.3 percent this year.

To contact the reporter on this story: Andy Fixmer in Los Angeles at

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Anthony Palazzo at

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