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ITV Scraps SDN Sale, Will Milk It For Pensions Instead

The business that operates one of six UK digital terrestrial TV multiplexes is now little more than a pension fund for ITV.

COO John Cresswell, named interim CEO on Tuesday, has scrapped the sale of SDN and will instead use it as “asset backing” toward ITV’s pension scheme.

That would reduce the ailing broadcaster’s pension deficit, ITV’s market announcement says, adding: “SDN continues to trade in line with expectations, with full year revenues expected to exceed £40 million.”

S4C, United News & Media and ntl formed S4C Digital Networks (SDN) in 1997 to broadcast S4C, Five and TeleG on Multiplex A of the new DTT network. They also

The group sold to ITV (LSE: ITV) in 2005 for a hefty £134 million but ITV has been trying to sell it on since March to ease its crisis. It’s notable that neither Disney (NYSE: DIS) nor Virgin Media (NSDQ: VMED) Television has bought the operator, on whose multiplex is carried ESPN UK and Virgin 1. But then, you don’t need to own the network to use the network.