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COX AND TIMES MIRROR ANNOUNCE SPORT CHANNEL VENTURE
Published April 26, 1995
Cox Communications and Time Mirror officially announced they will introduce two new cable TV channels "geared toward recreation and the outdoors." Outdoor Life will premiere in July, while Speedvision, featuring cars, boats and airplanes, will debut in January '96. Roger Werner, Jr., former CEO of ESPN, will run the new channels and head "another new venture that will consolidate the sales, advertising and administrative functions of the channels." With the channels offered on the Cox cable systems -- and their 3.2 million subscribers -- the "new channels begin life with a big advantage over competitors," as cable operators "have been reluctant" to add new channels because of "scarce dial space and tough new government pricing regulations" (Charles Haddad, ATLANTA CONSTITUTION, 4/26). Cox and Times Mirror also amended the terms of their merger, with both now agreeing to invest $100M on new cable services. Werner said the two "planned to spend about" $160M to start the two services (NEW YORK TIMES, 4/26). Both Cox and Times Mirror said they have talked with other potential partners about investing in these channels (Cox). MORE RACING ON TV: Raycom Inc. announced yesterday that they will produce and distribute a 26-week series titled "Racing Home" that will focus on the personalities of the NASCAR racing scene. Hosted by Barbara McKay, the half-hour Raycom production will be distributed over-the-air in the Southern portion of the country with additional coverage through regional sports cable networks. The series will begin on July 1 and run for 26 consecutive weeks (Raycom).