Ulster Television PLC
8 April 2002
Ulster Television plc Proposed Acquisition of Treaty Radio
Ulster Television plc ('UTV' or the 'UTV Group') announces
the proposed acquisition of the entire issued share capital
of Treaty Radio Limited ('Treaty Radio'), a radio
broadcasting business based in Limerick, Ireland, for
consideration of euro 15.74 million (Stg£9.72 million). In
addition, UTV will assume liability for the net debt in
Treaty Radio of circa euro 1.17 million (Stg£0.73 million).
Treaty Radio operates an independent local radio station in
Limerick branded as Live95FM. Since its launch in 1997,
Live95FM has become an established player in the local radio
market in Limerick.
The consideration will be payable by UTV in cash and loan
notes on completion. The cash element will be financed
through a combination of UTV's own resources and new bank
debt facilities. The loan notes will be bank guaranteed and
issued on terms satisfactory to UTV and the shareholders of
The acquisition is conditional inter alia, upon certain
completion conditions and regulatory clearances including
the approval of the Broadcasting Commission of Ireland (the
Live95FM is an established radio broadcasting business with
a leading listenership position in the Limerick region, one
of the largest counties in Ireland. With close to 90,000
listeners, Live95FM has consistently built up its
listenership since it commenced broadcasting in 1997. The
recent JNLR survey showed an increase in the station's share
of the Limerick radio broadcasting market from 31% in
December 1999 to 38% in December 2001.
Treaty Radio's unaudited figures for the financial year to
31 December 2001 show turnover of euro 2.61 million (Stg£1.61
million) and, taking into account certain non-recurring
items with a value of euro 0.10 million (Stg£0.07 million),
adjusted EBITDA and operating profit of euro 0.90 million
(Stg£0.56 million) and euro 0.72 million (Stg£0.45 million)
respectively. At 31 December 2001, the unaudited net assets
of Treaty Radio were euro 0.73 million (Stg£0.45 million).
Treaty Radio's audited figures for the financial year to 31
December 2000 show turnover of euro 2.26 million (Stg£1.40
million), EBITDA of euro 0.14 million (Stg£0.09 million) and
operating profit of euro 0.07 million (Stg£0.04 million). At 31
December 2001, the audited net assets of Treaty were euro 0.30
million (Stg£0.19 million).
Completed Acquisition of County Media
In addition, and as anticipated in its preliminary results
statement issued on 18 March 2002, UTV announces completion
of the acquisition of the remaining 40% of County Media on
the terms set out in the announcement of 17 April 2001.
Completion of this transaction follows the recent grant of
regulatory approval by the BCI.
Strategic Rationale for the Acquisition of Treaty Radio
* The acquisition of Treaty Radio represents a further
key step in the implementation of UTV's stated strategy to
expand its media interests on an all Ireland basis.
* Together with the acquisition of County Media, this
transaction will further strengthen the position of the UTV
Group as an important participant in the Irish radio market
with a strong local focus and a commitment to the
development of the Irish broadcasting market as a whole.
* The directors of UTV believe that Treaty Radio
represents a significant growth opportunity.
* As a well resourced Irish media group with brand
leadership in key regions, the enlarged UTV Group will be in
an even stronger position to compete effectively against its
rapidly consolidating UK and international media peers.
* Broadcasting is converging towards a single-medium
delivery for voice, text and vision. It is important for UTV
to ensure that it structures its business in a way that will
enable it to respond effectively to consumer demands in this
new multi-media market place.
Commenting on the proposed acquisition of Treaty Radio, John
McCann, Managing Director of UTV said:
'We are absolutely delighted to announce our proposed
acquisition of Treaty Radio. This is an important strategic
move for UTV which together with our now completed
acquisition of County Media, further strengthens our multi-
media offering throughout Ireland. We look forward to
working with the management team of Treaty Radio to build
upon the excellent local service they have provided to the
people of the Limerick region.'
Commenting on the proposed acquisition of Treaty Radio, Jim
Deegan, the Chairman of Treaty Radio said:
'The success of the station to date is attributable to our
commitment to the delivery of a professional broadcasting
service with a strong focus on issues of local concern.
Recent changes in broadcasting technologies and markets have
created a momentum towards corporate consolidation. We
believe UTV will provide the expertise and resources
required to further develop Live95FM to the highest
standards while at the same time maintaining a strong local
Goodbody Corporate Finance advised UTV and IBI Corporate
Finance advised Treaty Radio in relation to this
8 April 2002
For further information contact:
Orla McKibbin Chris Lynch
Head of Press and PR Weber Shandwick Square Mile
UTV plc Telephone: 0044 207 950 2820
Telephone: 04890 262188
Notes to Editor:
1. Goodbody Corporate Finance is the corporate finance arm
of Goodbody Stockbrokers, a wholly owned subsidiary of
Allied Irish Banks plc.
2. IBI Corporate Finance is the corporate finance arm of
the Bank of Ireland Group.
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