Simon Cowell
Simon Cowell

After three seasons of dwindling ratings, Fox has pulled the plug on The X Factor USA. But the reason for the show's cancellation has been pinned on Simon Cowell, who on Friday announced that he is leaving the show. "I've had a fantastic time over the last 12 years, both on The X Factor and American Idol," Cowell said in a statement cited by the media.

"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!)," Cowell added. The British talent competition judge added that he is returning to the U.K. version of the show and thanked Fox for its support.

In a statement, the network said that there can be no X Factor without Cowell, and hence the cancellation. "To all of us at Fox, Simon is more than one of the most prolific TV personalities of our time — he's part of our family," Kevin Reilly, Fox Entertainment's chairman, said in a statement.

"Unfortunately, there is no X Factor 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," Reilly added. 

However, social networking sites are abuzz with speculation that bad ratings resulted in the show's cancellation. While in the first two seasons, "X Factor" held to its third position behind "American Idol" and "The Voice," it is currently behind other reality shows such as "The Bachelor," "Dancing With the Stars," "Shark Tank," "Survivor," "Amazing Race" and "The Biggest Loser, Variety reported.