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ntl completes sale of broadcast business

# 31 January 2005, 17:00 by Frank

UK cable group ntl announced today that it has completed the disposal of its Broadcast division to a consortium led by Astralia’s Macquarie Communications Infrastructure Group.

It also announced that it would spend up to £475million ($894 million) to buy back shares with proceeds from the sale of its UK TV towers. £500million pounds from the £1.27billion deal will be used to pay down debt.

ntl agreed in December to sell its broadcast unit, whose towers provide transmission for UK broadcasters ITV, Channel 4 and Channel Five, to a group led by Australia’s Macquarie Communications Infrastructure.

ntl:broadcast was long regarded within the company as the cash cow that kept them afloat during difficult times, and was for a long time the most profitable division.

CEO Simon Duffy, indicating ntl’s new priorities, said: “The closure of this transaction enables ntl to concentrate all its resources on growing and improving its UK communications and content distribution business.”

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