Setanta puts ad pitch on hold

Setanta is pitching its advertising account in a tumultuous week that could see the Irish broadcaster go into administration.

The incumbent, Big Al’s Creative Emporium, is understood to be pitching against Miles Calcraft Briginshaw Duffy and Beattie McGuinness Bungay.

The review is part of a strategy to rebrand the broadcaster, but it is believed to be on hold, pending the outcome of events this week. Setanta’s marketing director is Tim Ryan.

The broadcaster has also suspended the admission of any new customers as it focuses on hammering out a plan to prevent it from going into administration.

A message on its website states: “The management of Setanta Sports is in the process of attempting to secure the future of the business.

“In the current circumstances, we have decided to suspend temporarily the acceptance of new subscriptions.”

Its founders Michael O’Rourke and Leonard Ryan are approaching business associates to buy its the US and Irish operations, according to reports.

The possibility of a management buyout of the remaining business is also being touted.

The broadcaster would need an estimated £100m to survive.

ESPN, the US sports broadcaster, has emerged as one interested party to either buy the Irish arm of the business or bidding for its rights to English Premier League matches.

BSkyB has also been previously in the frame, but is said to have walked away from providing the rival broadcaster a £50m lifeline.

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