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ESPN Joins Magna Effort to Automate Buying

ESPN says it is joining the Magna Consortium, a group
looking to test technology to increase the efficiency and automation in media

"Given the dynamic nature of live sports programming, these
new models have the potential to increase our efficiency and campaign
effectiveness across all platforms," Eric Johnson, executive VP of multimedia
sales at ESPN, said in a statement. "Ultimately this will allow our teams to
spend less time on nominal tasks and more time on creativity and activation,
thereby further enhancing our premium sales proposition and client service."

Other members of the consortium, announced by Magna, a part
of Interpublic Group's Mediabrands unit, are A+E Networks, Cablevision, Tribune
Co., AOL, and Clear Channel Media.

"Magna and IPG
Mediabrands are committed to automation and to expanding the pipeline of
available inventory that can be planned and purchased through automated means,"
said Tim Spengler, Magna's Worldwide CEO. "As the industry's premier source for
premium sports content, ESPN's commitment is crucial to the advancement of our
automation agenda, and we are thrilled that they have joined our cause."