Madison Square Garden Fiscal Third-Quarter Financials Rise

Madison Square Garden-Knicks Game-2011
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The MSG Sports unit that houses its namesake arena delivered its most profitable quarter in two years.

The Madison Square Garden Co. on Friday reported improved fiscal third-quarter financials as improved results at the unit that houses its namesake arena helped drive results higher.

The company, controlled by the Dolan family that also owns cable operator Cablevision Systems and cable channel group AMC Networks, recorded quarterly earnings of $31.1 million, up from $19.1 million in the year-ago period.

Revenue of $400.5 million was up 21 percent driven by a 37 percent improvement at the MSG Sports unit that houses MSG. Pay TV revenue also increased.

The MSG Sports financials benefited from "a higher percentage of New York Knicks-related revenues being recognized during the quarter versus the prior year period as a result of the delayed start to the NBA season and the compressed New York Knicks regular season schedule," MSG said. "The overall revenue increase included higher professional sports team ticket-related revenue, league distributions, food, beverage and merchandise sales, suite rental fee revenue, event-related revenues from other live sporting events and sponsorship and signage revenues."

The Knicks this year have seen the benefit of Jeremy Lin's strong run and the resulting fan excitement, which was dubbed "Linsanity."

"MSG Sports delivered its most profitable quarter in our two year history as a public company," said president and CEO Hank Ratner. "The segment is realizing financial benefits as a result of the new products and amenities we are providing as part of the first phase of the transformation project. Once the playoffs conclude, we will begin the second phase of the transformation and look forward to the debut of the transformed upper bowl of the arena this fall." ?


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