UBF Media Group, Euro Media TV talking merger

By Kevin Hilton

SVG European correspondent

Two the largest facilities operators in the of European sports sector, UBF Media Group and Euro Media T l vision, are in negotiations that could result in a merger of the companies, creating a combined studios, outside broadcast, post-production and equipment hire operation with a projected revenue for this year of €300 million.

The principal shareholders and management of both groups are said to support the move, which could provide a platform for greater international expansion if it goes through. Dutch company UBF has a number of subsidiaries across Europe, including Videohouse in Belgium, NOB Studios of Germany and CTV Outside Broadcasts in the UK. UBF employs approximately 900 full-time staff and reported a revenue of €140 million for 2006.

Euro Media T l vision is based in Paris and claims to be the leading technical facilities and services provider to the French broadcast market. Among its holdings are studios SFP, which works in the sports sector supplying wireless transmission systems, VCF, also a specialist in distributing live sports events, Euro Media, whose credits include numerous reality TV, quiz and entertainment shows, and equipment rental company Tatou. The group also owns Swiss R&D firm Livetools Technology and in total employs around 350 people, making in the region of €130 million last year.

The proposed merger is currently going through a period of due diligence, during which time no further announcements will be made. If the negotiations are successful the resultant super-facilities group will further consolidate OB and sports transmission operations across Europe.