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UTV Ireland set to be acquired by Virgin Media

Published: Mon 11 Jul 2016

UTV Ireland set to be acquired by Virgin Media
 
ITV plc today announces that it has agreed to sell UTV Ireland to Virgin Media, owner of TV3, subject to regulatory approval. 
 
The acquisition will not be completed until it is cleared by the regulators, which is expected to take some months. Until then, ITV remains the owner of UTV Ireland and is committed to maintaining the service during that time.   
 
As part of the deal, Virgin Media will also take over a 10-year programme supply agreement with ITV Global Entertainment. 
 
UTV Ireland was launched in January 2015, prior to ITV’s acquisition of UTV's television assets earlier this year. 
 
Christy Swords, Director, Broadcast Finance & Operations for ITV, said:
 
“Launching UTV Ireland last year represented a significant achievement by the teams in Dublin and Belfast in challenging circumstances.  ITV took over the business a few months ago and we've concluded that bringing TV3 and UTV Ireland together under common ownership offers the best prospect of delivering a strong and sustainable Irish commercial broadcaster, underpinned by a long-term programming agreement with ITV.
 
“We recognise that this has been an uncertain period for the staff of UTV and UTV Ireland and we have been determined to reach a speedy resolution. We believe that the decision we have made represents an important step forward for the future of the channel.”