X FACTOR will be on air until at least the end of 2022 after ITV offered Simon Cowell an extension to keep the talent show on air.
Despite struggling in the ratings battle against Strictly Come Dancing, the telly and music mogul says the broadcaster want to renew the show because it has increased in popularity among young people.
In an exclusive interview, Cowell told The Sun: “We’ve just been offered an extension on both shows because of the 16 to 34-year-old audience.
“We could probably do three years or five years. It makes a lot of money.
“We got to a point years ago where we were able to compete with Strictly because there was that huge audience.
“We’re losing people now but fortunately the young audience has actually grown this year and all the advertisers and the sponsors want that income on a Saturday.”
Simon’s revelation comes less than a fortnight after X Factor drew in just 3.7million viewers – its lowest audience since it launched in 2004 – for its calamity Fright Night episode which was plagued with sound issues and saw the public vote cancelled.
The Syco boss has revealed he is now planning a major shake-up of the show, which has been on air since 2004, and is even considering a celebrity version – 12 years since the last one.
He said: “I think with all things you’ve got to change the format a bit sometimes, which is part of our job, the fun part of our job.
“ITV have been amazing actually this year. We had this really good run on BGT with the live shows and we coped without Ant.
“We’ve got the new dance show on the BBC, and two other music shows, which I think will be announced soon and we’re going to do over the next two years as well.”
The Sun told yesterday how Simon had already axed Sir Philip Green and Little Mix to clear toxic people from his business following months of conspiracy theories about the state of his personal life, health and Syco music label.