SBD/3/Sports Media

MAGIC PROFITS "SOAR" AS TEAM BRING TV IN-HOUSE

     The Magic Television Network, the in-house production arm
that broadcasts nearly all of the team's away games, is "boosting
the team's bottom line," according to Gene Yasuda in this
morning's ORLANDO SENTINEL.  Magic TV revenue "has soared 172%
from three years ago and "now accounts for 10% of the Orlando
Magic Ltd.'s overall revenue."  With the NBA's growing
popularity, NBA teams are "cashing in" on TV revenues by bringing
TV operations in-house.  In fact, more than half of the NBA teams
"independently produce and help broadcast at least some of their
games."  Magic Dir of Broadcasting John Cook:  "Not only does it
allow us to control our commercial rates, we can also promote the
FanAttic store if we want to."  The team develops programming and
the Magic Network debuted two programs this year, a 30-minute
pre-game show, and a weekly Magic Magazine.  These shows give the
team "additional opportunity to sell commercial slots," and rates
for spots commercials have increased by 60% as ratings for the
Magic road games have "nearly tripled" over the past three years.
But in-house broadcasting is not for every team, as franchises
"that aren't doing well" have left the work to the broadcasters.
Bullets Dir of PR Matt Williams:  "With a rights fee, you get a
lump check and have nothing to worry about.  When you bring it
in-house, you're on the line to sell the product" (ORLANDO
SENTINEL, 5/2).
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