The X Factor USA cancelled as Simon Cowell heads back to Britain

SIMON COWELL's THE X FACTOR experiment in America has officially failed - the TV talent show has been axed by executives at TV network Fox.

The show will not be back for a fourth season later this year (14).

The news comes just hours after Cowell announced he would be returning to the U.K.'s version of The X Factor as a judge.

The music mogul quit the show three years ago to concentrate on making the format work in America. He also stepped down as a judge on American Idol to work solely on his new show.

Last month (Jan14), Fox entertainment chief Kevin Reilly addressed the show's struggle to win an audience against rival shows like Idol and The Voice, stating, "The show underperformed this year. Simon himself would admit that. The ratings were not what we hoped."

He added, "If the show were to come back, it would not be in the current format we have."

America's X Factor launched with Antonio 'L.A.' Reid, Nicole Scherzinger and Paula Abdul as judges, alongside Cowell, in 2011. Demi Lovato and Britney Spears replaced Abdul and Scherzinger in the second season, and Kelly Rowland and Paulina Rubio stepped in for Spears and Reid for last year's (13) third season.

Lovato recently announced she would not be back for a fourth season of the show.

Announcing the decision to end The X Factor on Friday (07Feb14), Reilly said, "Unfortunately, there is no X Factor USA without Simon Cowell, but we understand and support his decision to focus on the international formats and on the next phase of his personal life. We wish him the very best, and it’s our sincere hope that we work together again soon."

A statement from Cowell, who is set to become a first-time father later this year (14), reads: "I’ve had a fantastic time over the last 12 years, both on The X Factor and American Idol. And apart from being lucky enough to find some amazing talent on the shows, I have always had an incredible welcome from the American public (most of the time!)

“Last year, for a number of reasons, I had to make a decision to return to the U.K. version of The X Factor in 2014. So, for now, I’m back to the U.K. and I want to thank Fox for being an incredible partner and I also want to thank everybody who has supported my shows. America, I’ll see you soon!"

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