Madison Square Garden Entertainment Corp.
Company typePublic
NYSEMSGE (Class A)
Industryentertainment
real estate
Founded2020; 4 years ago (2020)[1]
FounderJames L. Dolan
HeadquartersNew York City, New York, U.S.
Key people
James L. Dolan
(Executive Chairman & CEO)
Andrew Lustgarten
(President)
OwnerDolan family (70.9% voting, 21.6% economic)[2]
Silver Lake Partners (≈10%)[3]
Divisions
  • MSG Sphere Studios
Subsidiaries
WebsiteOfficial website

Madison Square Garden Entertainment Corp. (also known as MSG Entertainment) is an American entertainment holding company based in New York City. The company was established in 2020 when The Madison Square Garden Company (now Madison Square Garden Sports) spun off its non-sports assets as an independent, publicly traded company.[4][5]

MSG Entertainment controls live events at Madison Square Garden, both in the arena and in The Theater at Madison Square Garden. In addition to the Garden itself, MSG Entertainment operates two other theaters in Manhattan: Radio City Music Hall and the Beacon Theatre. Outside New York City, MSG Entertainment controls the operations of the Chicago Theatre (acquired in 2008), co-booking at the Wang Theatre in Boston (since 2008), and an entertainment venue in Las Vegas known as Sphere.[6] MSG Entertainment also produces the Radio City Christmas Spectacular (starring the Rockettes) at Radio City Music Hall and formerly in other venues around the United States.[7]

On March 26, 2021, MSG Entertainment announced that it would acquire the regional sports network group MSG Networks in an all-stock deal, reuniting it with its namesake venue;[6] MSG Networks had originally been spun out from The Madison Square Garden Company in 2015.[8] The acquisition was completed in July 2021.[9]

Its origins can trace back to 2010 when Cablevision Systems Corporation spun off the Madison Square Garden properties into a new company called The Madison Square Garden Company.

Facial recognition software controversy

MSG has used facial recognition systems at its venues since 2018.[10] In July 2022, MSG Entertainment instituted a policy that blacklists representatives of law firms that have been engaged in litigation with MSG or its subsidiaries from attending its venues in New York City. The company stated that this is for professional conduct reasons.[11][12]

MSG Entertainment has faced criticism for using facial recognition to enforce this policy,[13][12] which is being probed by the Attorney General of New York.[14] In January 2023, members of the New York State Assembly and New York State Senate introduced identical bills designed to prevent MSG Entertainment from enforcing its policy at sporting events.[15][16][17][18]

In late 2022, an attorney who works for a law firm in New Jersey involved in active litigation against MSG Entertainment was barred from attending the Radio City Christmas Spectacular with her nine-year-old daughter's Girl Scout troop and was forced to have her daughter enter the venue with the other children and mothers and attend the show without her.[19] The attorney in question does not practice law in the state of New York and had not heard of the relevant case involving MSG Entertainment until she was prevented from attending the show; she was singled out solely because of her association with her law firm.[19]

Explaining the policy, Executive Chairman James L. Dolan stated, "It’s like something out of ‘The Godfather,’ it's like ‘It’s only business.’ It's not only business, and if you sue us, we’re gonna tell you not to come."[19] One lawyer barred from entering Madison Square Garden to watch a New York Rangers game, meanwhile, stated that Dolan, "lit a firestorm–for no apparent reason other than that he is a petty and vindictive person."[15]

Executive management

References

  1. ^ "The Madison Square Garden Company Becomes New Public Sports And Entertainment Company" (Press release). Madison Square Garden Sports Corp. April 20, 2020. Retrieved July 21, 2020.
  2. ^ "FORM 10-Q". www.sec.gov.
  3. ^ Silicon Valley fund seeks major stake in New York Knicks, Rangers - New York Post, 3 November 2019
  4. ^ Miller, Ben (April 20, 2020). "Madison Square Garden Entertainment spin-off is complete". New York Business Journal. New York Business Journal. Retrieved July 22, 2020.
  5. ^ Chin, Kimberly (November 7, 2019). "Madison Square Garden to Spin Off Entertainment Unit". The Wall Street Journal. The Wall Street Journal. Retrieved July 22, 2020.
  6. ^ a b Hayes, Dade (2021-03-26). "Madison Square Garden Entertainment Acquires MSG Networks Sibling In All-Stock Deal". Deadline. Retrieved 2021-03-26.
  7. ^ "Our Company". msgentertainment.com. Madison Square Garden Entertainment Corp. Retrieved July 22, 2020.
  8. ^ Beckerman, Josh (2015-09-11). "Madison Square Garden Details Split". Wall Street Journal. ISSN 0099-9660. Retrieved 2021-03-26.
  9. ^ "MSG Entertainment Completes Acquisition of MSG Networks". 9 July 2021.
  10. ^ Draper, Kevin (2018-03-13). "Madison Square Garden Has Used Face-Scanning Technology on Customers". The New York Times. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved 2023-01-20.
  11. ^ Frankel, Alison (2022-06-27). "Game over? Plaintiffs' lawyers banned from Madison Square Garden by MSG". Reuters. Retrieved 2023-01-26.
  12. ^ a b Hill, Kashmir (2023-01-16). "Lawyers Barred by Madison Square Garden Found a Way Back In". The New York Times. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved 2023-01-16.
  13. ^ Hill, Kashmir; Kilgannon, Corey (2022-12-22). "Madison Square Garden Uses Facial Recognition to Ban Its Owner's Enemies". The New York Times. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved 2023-01-20.
  14. ^ Brodkin, Jon (2023-01-26). "MSG probed over use of facial recognition to eject lawyers from show venues". Ars Technica. Retrieved 2023-01-26.
  15. ^ a b Kelly, Keith J. (January 26, 2023). "ABC Nightline on Case as Hoylman, Simone Intro Bills to Stop MSG from Banning Attorneys". Our Town. Retrieved March 25, 2023.
  16. ^ Gonella, Catalina (February 4, 2023). "A state senator heard he was banned from MSG. So he tried to go to a Knicks game". Gothamist. WNYC. Retrieved March 25, 2023.
  17. ^ "Bill A03195". New York State Assembly. Archived from the original on March 25, 2023. Retrieved March 25, 2023.
  18. ^ "Senate Bill S2424". The New York State Senate. Archived from the original on March 25, 2023. Retrieved March 25, 2023.
  19. ^ a b c Wallace, Sarah; Shea, Tom (February 8, 2023) [February 6, 2023]. "MSG Entertainment Lifts Ban for Some Lawyers Involved in Lawsuits Against Company". NBC 4 New York. Retrieved March 25, 2023.
  20. ^ a b "MSG Entertainment Becomes New Public Company". msgentertainment.com. Madison Square Garden Entertainment Corp. April 20, 2020. Retrieved July 22, 2020.
  21. ^ "MSG Entertainment Names Scott Packman Executive Vice President and General Counsel". msgentertainment.com. Madison Square Garden Entertainment Corp. June 29, 2020. Retrieved July 22, 2020.