TV3 completes UTV Ireland takeover that 'may result in unavoidable redundancies'

TV3 says it has completed the acquisition of UTV Ireland.

The commercial broadcaster, which is owned by Virgin Media, says the takeover could lead to unavoidable redundancies at the station.

In its restructuring programme to consolidate the two businesses into one, the broadcaster said it hopes that staff currently employed by UTV Ireland can fill 40 open vacancies in TV3.

"The proposed changes may result in unavoidable redundancies in UTV Ireland but where possible, staff will be offered redeployment opportunities within TV3", Virgin Media says.

The company will enter into a 30-day consultation period, and it is says it expects "various steps associated with this plan" will be completed by January 2017.

As part of the deal, UTV Ireland will move from Macken House to TV3's headquarters in Ballymount.

The UTV Ireland channel will also rebrand over the coming weeks.

Pat Kiely, managing director of TV3, said: "Today's announcement strengthens independent television broadcasting in Ireland by bringing together great channels and great content under the one roof.

"The combined TV3 Group business is now better equipped to compete against significant local and international broadcasters.

"We can now also play an increasingly bigger role in the development of Irish originated production and broadcasting. I am confident that our new three channel structure will drive the future potential and long term growth of the business."

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