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Nate Silver’s FiveThirtyEight publication is leaving parent company ESPN, but, as Silver said Tuesday, “not going very far.” Silver’s site, which was once licensed to The New York Times and then acquired by ESPN, is moving over to Disney sister company ABC News.
“We’re super excited to work with @ABC and combine our strengths with theirs as we tackle the 2018 and 2020 elections and other news stories,” Silver said on Twitter.
Back in January, it was reported that FiveThirtyEight was likely to leave the ESPN fold, with ABC News and The Atlantic considered to be the most likely landing spots for the statistics-heavy publication.
ABC News president James Goldston announced the move in a memo Tuesday. “At a time when politics has never been more extraordinary, fascinating, and confusing, FiveThirtyEight will help us bring even more clarity and insight to what’s really going on,” he wrote. “I am hopeful that the combination of their skills and ours will lead to even more great work in the years ahead.”
While Silver’s publication is leaving ESPN, a press release notes that “FiveThirtyEight will also continue to provide data-driven sports coverage in conjunction with ABC News and ESPN.”
In March 2018, ESPN said it reached 77.3 million unique visitors in the U.S. As a standalone website, FiveThirtyEight reached 5.8 million visitors in the U.S. in March, per comScore.
In the release, Silver said that Goldston “has a real vision for how FiveThirtyEight can contribute to ABC’s news and election coverage, and we’re looking forward to building upon what we’ve created with ESPN. We’re looking forward to getting to work immediately as we prepare for the 2018 midterms.” The announcement also notes that Silver and his reporters will appear regularly across ABC News.
ESPN executive vp content Connor Schell said, “I am incredibly proud of the work we’ve done together and pleased FiveThirtyEight will remain a part of The Walt Disney Company. As storytelling around data and analytics remains an important way that ESPN serves sports fans every day, our team will continue to utilize Nate and the FiveThirtyEight experts to allow fans to benefit from their sports content.”