TVC Holdings plc, a leading publicly quoted investment holding company, today (Tuesday, 15 July 2008) announced that it has acquired a shareholding of 11% in UTV Media plc (“UTV”), a leading radio and TV business, for an aggregate consideration of £14.9m (€19m). This is TVC Holdings’ second new investment following its successful €50 million placing and listing on the AIM market of the London Stock exchange and the IEX market of the Irish Stock Exchange in 2007. TVC Holdings is now the largest single shareholder in UTV.
This investment reflects TVC Holdings’ stated investment strategy of acquiring significant stakes in both public and private companies across a range of sectors, principally in the UK and Ireland. TVC’s existing portfolio includes the publicly quoted company, Norkom Group plc, and the Quality/Comfort Inn hotel chain, led by Pat McCann, ex CEO of Jurys Doyle Group plc. The UTV investment represents 15% of the TVC Holdings’ net assets after minority interests as at 31 March 2008.
UTV’s business includes radio, television and new media assets in Great Britain and Ireland. The Group is listed on the Official List of both the London Stock Exchange and the Irish Stock Exchange. UTV’s multimedia assets include UTV Limited, the Channel 3 licence holder for Northern Ireland, 24 local radio stations (including FM104 in Ireland), talkSPORT, the national radio sports station in Great Britain, and UTV internet. UTV recently completed a £49.9m rights issue as part of an overall refinancing to reduce the Group’s gearing, strengthen the balance sheet and enable the continuation of its strategy of developing a diversified multimedia business.
Speaking today on its new investment in UTV, Shane Reihill, Executive Chairman of TVC Holdings, said:
“We believe UTV is a well managed business, which is currently undervalued by the market. We believe that, following UTV’s recent rights issue and associated re-financing of its balance sheet, the Company is in a strong position to deliver upon its strategy and maximise value for all its shareholders”.