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Arqiva to acquire Project Kangaroo platform assets


• Platform assets being sold to Arqiva as independent operator
• Assets to provide technical basis of new video-on-demand service to be launched in the coming months
• Service will aim to provide high-quality, long-form content from both leading broadcasters and independent content providers

Arqiva has today announced that it has agreed to acquire the platform assets of Project Kangaroo, the video-on-demand (VOD) platform developed by UKVOD LLP, a joint venture set up by BBC Worldwide, ITV and Channel 4.  The acquisition is expected to be concluded within a few weeks.

The assets comprise the hardware and software technology, and related intellectual property developed for the Project Kangaroo service.  They provide the technical basis of a VOD platform designed for a content aggregation service, where a wide variety of TV content is brought together in a one-stop-shop for long-form video content.  Under Project Kangaroo the platform was close to being ready for market launch before the initiative was prohibited by the Competition Commission.

Arqiva plans to use the Project Kangaroo platform assets to launch a new video-on-demand service to UK consumers in the coming months.  The platform will aim to host top-end quality content from leading broadcasters and independent content providers to provide a broad range of user experiences to its audiences.  Arqiva says that both free-to-air and pay content propositions will be offered.

Steve Holebrook, managing director for Terrestrial Broadcast at Arqiva, said: “We are delighted to have reached this agreement to acquire the platform assets of Project Kangaroo.  Arqiva and its direct predecessors have been delivering linear analogue and digital TV services to UK viewers for many decades and we’re currently upgrading the TV network to deliver DSO.  We believe that online video-on-demand is an exciting and complementary development, and a natural extension to our traditional broadcast business.”

As owner and operator of the UK’s terrestrial TV infrastructure and licence holder of two of the six digital terrestrial TV multiplexes, Arqiva already has strong relationships with public-service broadcasters and other content providers in the UK.

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About Arqiva
Arqiva operates at the heart of the broadcast and mobile communications industry and is at the forefront of network solutions and services in an increasingly digital world. The company provides much of the infrastructure behind television, radio and wireless communications in the UK and has a growing presence in Ireland, mainland Europe and the USA. There are three business units:

Terrestrial Broadcast provides transmission for all UK terrestrial TV broadcasters, including the new networks being built for the Digital Switch Over. Transmission is also provided for BBC Radio and most commercial radio stations, both analogue and DAB. The company owns and operates two of the six UK digital terrestrial TV multiplexes, enabling major media companies to bring their TV and radio services to Freeview.

Satellite & Media provides global communication platforms to enterprise, government and broadcast customers around the world. It owns and operates teleports at key locations including Los Angeles, Washington, London and Paris, as well as comprehensive satellite capacity, an international terrestrial fibre network and extensive media facilities. These enable Arqiva to provide world leading organisations with a comprehensive range of services to deliver their data, broadcasts and media across the globe.

Wireless Access provides cellular, wireless broadband, voice and data solutions for the mobile communications, public safety, local government, and commercial markets. Arqiva is the largest independent provider of radio sites in the UK and Ireland. With its own spectrum, the company can provide complete mobile communications networks including backhaul links.

Arqiva has its headquarters near Winchester and other major UK offices in London, Warwick, Buckinghamshire and Yorkshire. The company is owned by a consortium of investors led by Macquarie Communications Infrastructure Group. Major customers include the BBC, ITV, Channel 4, Five, BSkyB, Classic FM, the five UK mobile operators, the RNLI and the Metropolitan Police.

For more information please contact:
Simon Rothwell/Alistair Kent 
Harvard Public Relations
Tel: +44 (0)20 8759 0005

Bruce Randall
Arqiva, Winchester
Tel: +44 (0)1962 822582