UTV confirms ITV sale talks

UTV Media, the owner of Talksport, has confirmed it is in talks with ITV over the sale of its TV assets.

UTV Media: in talks with ITV
UTV Media: in talks with ITV

The Belfast-based company’s share price climbed 10 per cent in early trading this morning to 172 pence in response to speculation about the deal, which emerged over the weekend in Irish newspapers.

This morning, a spokeswoman for UTV said: "The Board of UTV Media plc ("UTV") notes the recent media speculation and confirms that it is in discussions regarding a potential sale of its television assets.

"Discussions are ongoing and may or may not result in such a transaction being agreed. A further announcement will be made when appropriate."

UTV Media owns 12 local radio stations in England, as well as Talksport and Sport, the free magazine. It oversees the running of the ITV network across Northern Ireland since Ulster Television was founded in 1959.

It is due to report its half-year results on Friday, 27 August.

A spokeswoman for ITV said: "We never comment on speculation."