In a surprise move earlier this week, the BBC sold off its BBC Broadcast division to Australian-based Creative Broadcast Services Limited, owned by investment firm Macquarie Capital Alliance Group and Macquarie Bank Limited for $297 million (or $166 million pounds). BBC Broadcast handles playout for the BBC and other European networks and also designs interactive and other next-generation services.
The BBC originally planned to announce a short list of buyers next month, then the winning bid in September, but the offer from Creative Broadcast Services exceeded those from other bidders by such a large amount that there was no reason to continue the formal process.
A key advantage for current BBC Broadcast employees is that there will be no changes to the operations, bypassing the type of union conflicts that have recently hit the BBC.
The challenge now will be rebranding the company, which must leave the well-respected letters BBC by the wayside.
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