Former ESPN President John Skipper Lands New Job

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John Skipper

Skipper will be executive chairman of U.K.-based sports media company Perform Group.

John Skipper, who abruptly resigned his position as president of ESPN last December, citing "substance addiction," is joining U.K.-based sports media company Perform Group as executive chairman.

According to a Tuesday morning announcement, Skipper will oversee all of Perform Group's strategy and operations, which include a streaming sports service and websites like Goal.com and SportingNews.com.

Skipper praised Perform Group founder and CEO Simon Denyer in the release. "Simon and his team have built an enormously impressive company, providing an excellent base to establish a global leadership position in the over-the-top sports subscription business, the clear future of sports delivery," he said. "Perform Group's platform and expertise, coupled with its success in launching subscription services in Germany, Japan and Canada provides a model we intend to replicate around the world."

Denyer, in a prepared statement, said Skipper is "one of the most significant leaders in the history of our industry." He added, "I am delighted that he has agreed to join me and the team to help take Perform to the next level of our ambitions."

Skipper's resignation shocked ESPN and the broader sports media industry. About three months later, he shared the full story with James Andrew Miller for The Hollywood Reporter. Skipper said that his cocaine dealer had tried to extort him, which led to his departure from the company after a conversation with Disney CEO Bob Iger.

"They threatened me, and I understood immediately that threat put me and my family at risk, and this exposure would put my professional life at risk as well," Skipper told Miller.

In the interview, Skipper expressed interest in taking another job in the industry. "I’d like to get back in and do some things that matter," he said at the time. "I’d like to work with some people who are doing exciting things."