Cable Networks Seek A Shop

Madison Square Garden is searching for an agency to create advertising and buy media for its two regional sports cable TV channels–Madison Square Garden Network and Fox Sports New York.
The networks are working with the Advertising Agency Register here. A client representative confirmed the review but referred all questions to AAR, which did not return several calls.
Sources, however, said the networks–which will continue to be advertised separately–need a shop to promote everything from the coverage of Knicks and Yankees games to original programming such as SportsDesk. The account is worth $2-5 million and the client hopes to hire a shop by the end of July.
A review for MSG Network began nearly a year ago, but stalled while Cablevision negotiated to buy a controlling interest in the Garden, according to sources. Last summer, ITT sold its 50 percent stake in the Garden to Cablevision for an estimated $650 million.
AAR invited some of the agencies that answered the initial requests for proposals to submit speculative creative samples this week. The identity and number of those shops was unclear at press time.
The prevailing shop will create TV, print and possibly outdoor advertising to reach consumers in New York, New Jersey and Connecticut, where the affiliates are available. Combined, the channels have more than 10 million subscribers.
Recent advertising for MSG Network, with the tagline “We’re all over it,” was created in-house.
With 6.1 million subscribers, MSG is the largest regional sports network in the country. Fox Sports New York used to be SportsChannel New York. Each is a Fox Sports Net affiliate.