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13/06/2005

BBC Broadcast acquires Broadcast DataServices from BBC Worldwide

BBC Broadcast has bought BBC Worldwide Ltd’s subsidiary Broadcast DataServices (BDS).
The deal adds BDS’s broadcast data and listings business to BBC Broadcast’s range of services. BBC Broadcast is Europe’s leading expert in the distribution and promotion of multimedia content and it offers a comprehensive range of services to playout, publish, promote and provide media access for content across all media, from television to mobile phones.
Now a wholly owned subsidiary of BBC Broadcast, BDS will continue to deliver a full service on behalf of broadcasters including the BBC, ITV, Channel 5, UKTV and Flextech. The company delivers broadcast listings and data to print media customers such as Radio Times as well as screen-based customers including NTL, Telewest, HomeChoice in the UK.
Pam Masters, Managing Director of BBC Broadcast, said: “BDS provides us with a business of breadth and depth of broadcasting data and expertise that can only add value to our existing operation, it should be viewed as a great asset by prospective buyers of BBC Broadcast Ltd.”
John Smith, BBC Worldwide’s Chief Executive, said: “BDS sits comfortably within BBC Broadcast’s portfolio of operations, bringing strategic and business benefits to both sides.
“In addition, this sale is a positive move by BBC Worldwide, and represents the latest in a series of changes that help fulfil the key recommendations of the commercial review.”
BDS’s European operation manages a database of data for about 400 channels, which can be delivered in any of 14 languages. The company provides European data to Microsoft, UPC and Sony, to help create Electronic Programme Guides.
The alignment of BDS alongside BBC Broadcast’s similar operation is expected to add significant potential to both operations. Once the sale of BBC Broadcast is complete it will transfer to the new owner.
The sale of BDS by BBC Worldwide follows the Corporation’s internal review of its commercial businesses. The review team concluded that BBC Worldwide should focus on businesses that export and exploit the BBC brand and intellectual property, but not businesses such as BDS.
(SP)
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