ESPN to Launch L.A. Website December 21

By Andrew Gauthier 

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Sports media company ESPN will roll out a local website for Los Angeles on December 21, with sites for New York and other cities to follow, as it looks to boost revenue from regional advertising sales, its top executive said on Tuesday.

Speaking at the Reuters Global Media Summit in New York, ESPN and ABC Sports President George Bodenheimer said he envisions bringing online 20 or more local sites that target fans with sports news specific to area teams and athletes.

ESPN, a division of Walt Disney Co, has local sites for Chicago, Boston and Dallas. Bodenheimer said Pittsburgh would be another natural fit because ESPN owns a radio station there.

“Over time, I expect those (local sites) to be significant profit drivers for our company,” Bodenheimer said. He said advertisers have reacted well to the local websites and ad sales are ahead of ESPN’s internal expectations. More…