IMG and Ari Fleischer Announce New Joint Venture to Create 'Ari Fleischer Sports Communications'

Mon Mar 10, 2008 10:25am EDT

* Reuters is not responsible for the content in this press release.

  NEW YORK, NY, Mar 10 (MARKET WIRE) -- 
IMG, the world's premier sports, entertainment and media company, and Ari
Fleischer, a
former White House press secretary and leading sports industry communicator,
today
announced the formation of a new joint venture: Ari Fleischer Sports
Communications.

    The New York-based consultancy company will offer management advisory
services,
including media training and interview preparation, image management, crisis
management and media relations to a wide range of athletes, coaches and
high-profile sports industry executives.  Fleischer will serve as the company's
President.  Sandy Montag, Senior Corporate Vice President of IMG Sports &
Entertainment, will serve as COO of the company.

    In making the announcement, Fleischer said, "Except for presidents and top
government officials, no one faces tougher scrutiny today than sports figures. 
Athletes now face a public -- and a media -- that demand more. Players and
executives who understand the media and know how to work with them find their
careers are launched to higher, more successful and lucrative levels because
of the good publicity they receive."

    George Pyne, President, IMG Sports & Entertainment, added, "Ari is a
talented professional with deep expertise across sports, government and
media.  We are delighted to partner with Ari and bring the worldwide resources
of
IMG to this venture in order to help athletes and sports industry clients manage
tough situations and successfully interact with the media."

    Ari Fleischer served as the primary spokesperson for President George W.
Bush during the historic presidential recount in 2000, September 11th, the
wars in Iraq and Afghanistan and the anthrax attack.  His bestselling
book,"Taking Heat," details his years in the White House and reached No. 7 on
the
New York Times best-seller list.

    Since leaving the White House, Fleischer has worked with some of the most
established people and organizations in sports, including Major League Baseball,
the Women's Tennis Association and The Sporting Goods Manufacturers
Association.  Fleischer also advises several major corporations on
communications issues.

    Fleischer continued, "Together with IMG, our new company will help people in
the
sports world so they can handle bad news and also take advantage of good."

    About Ari Fleischer Sports Communications

    Ari Fleischer Sports Communications is a new sports media consulting firm
brought to you by the former White House press secretary.  Fleischer's expertise
in
sports and communications brings a new level of sophistication required for
today's
high-profile world of sports.

    As White House press secretary, Fleischer developed a unique and proactive
approach
to crisis management and media training that he now brings to the sports
industry.  From forecasting potential vulnerabilities and weaknesses, to
shaping the message and image portrayed in the marketplace, Ari Fleischer Sports
Communications provides tools for sports leagues, coaches, athletes, and team
management to successfully handle the press.

    More information about Ari Fleischer Sports Communications is available at
www.fleischersports.com.

    About IMG

    IMG is the world's premier sports, entertainment and media enterprise.

    Operating in 30 countries, IMG's diverse businesses include: consulting
services;
event ownership and management; fashion events and models representation;
licensing; golf course design; and client representation in golf, tennis,
broadcasting, speakers, European football, rugby, cricket, motor sports,
coaching,
Olympic sports and action sports.  IMG Academies are the world's largest and
most
advanced multi-sport training and educational facilities, delivering
world-class sports training experiences to more than 12,000 junior, collegiate,
adult, and professional athletes each year.

    IMG's media and entertainment operations include content production
subsidiaries
Darlow Smithson Productions and Tiger Aspect Productions. Globally, IMG produces
and
distributes more than 11,000 hours of sports, documentary, drama, comedy,
entertainment, popular factual and children's content annually.  IMG also
represents
the broadcast rights to many of the world's premier sporting events and has
the world's largest sports archive with more than 250,000 hours of footage.

    Forstmann Little & Co. purchased IMG in 2004.

    More information about IMG is available at www.imgworld.com.

    

Contact:
Jim Gallagher
IMG
(212) 774-4419
Email Contact

Brian Weiss
IMG
(212) 774-6782
Email Contact

Copyright 2008, Market Wire, All rights reserved.

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