ESPN kicks off hunt for creative shop

ESPN, the US Disney-owned sports broadcaster, is looking for a creative agency to work on a brief to promote its successful US X-Games initiative in the UK.

The broadcaster is understood to be talking to agencies outside the ESPN roster ahead of a potential UK launch of X-Games, which includes extreme sports events, a clothing range and TV shows.

The broadcaster is looking for an agency experienced in targeting the youth market. Existing ESPN roster agencies include Heavenly, BLM Media and Promotions Factory.

The search comes more than a year after ESPN made its debut in the UK with ESPN Classic, a sports archive channel, which launched on Sky Digital in March 2006.

Last year, the brand hired Saatchi & Saatchi Singapore to manage creative duties for ESPN Star Sports, a flagship channel, which is shown across Asia. The agency created a campaign to push ESPN's coverage of Premier League football from England.

The US sports channel has also embarked on a heavy digital buying spree. Recent acquisitions include Scrum.com, the rugby news website, and Cricinfo, the cricket information site.