KIT digital expands global IPTV capabilities in Asia; acquires Singapore company


MUMBAI: KIT digital, has executed a definitive agreement to acquire privately-held Benchmark Broadcast Systems, based in Singapore.

"Benchmark was a choice acquisition for us in a number of ways, and one which we have been working on for some time. This acquisition demonstrates our commitment to the Asian markets and our determination to be the leader in video asset management in the BRIC markets. It also represents an extension to our existing IPTV systems integration capabilities — which support our larger-scale software implementations with broadcasters and network operators," said KIT digital chairman and CEO Kaleil Isaza Tuzman.

In consideration for 100% of Benchmark’s shares, the transaction includes guaranteed payments of approximately $9.5 million, directly to the company over time (comprised of $4.5 million in cash and $5.0 million in KIT digital common stock), plus approximately $1.1 million paid to employees over two years. The transaction also includes corporate performance-based contingent considerations, at the first and second anniversary of the transaction. KIT digital expects Benchmark to be immediately accretive on a cash-flow, EBITDA, and net profit basis.

"We plan to cross-sell our VX-one video management platform into Benchmark’s existing client base while leveraging Benchmark’s on-the-ground presence in South Asia, Southeast Asia and Greater China to expand our business more quickly in the region. We will also leverage KIT digital’s global sales force to roll out Benchmark’s digitization and NOC fit-out capabilities into our client base," added KIT digital president Gavin Campion.

Benchmark complements and expands KIT digital’s global client base, as well as KIT’s capabilities in managing video on the three screens of the mobile device, browser and IP-enabled television. Benchmark’s clients include Astro, CNBC, Express News, ESPN Star, ETV, MediaCorp, NDTV, Reliance Mediaworks, Sahara, TV9, VTV and Zee TV.

Benchmark president Ashish Mukherjee said, "We have been experiencing first-hand the shift in Asia from traditional video systems to IP-based technologies. We are excited to be joining the global leader in IP video management and we believe our collective strength will yield exceptional value and benefits for our combined customer base. Given Benchmark management’s two decades of expanding relationships with content owners and network operators across the region, we think the sales synergies between our companies are powerful."

"We are also looking forward to collaborating on software development for both IP- and ASI-based video technologies combining our companies’ respective strengths in video and broadcast technologies, and bridging the gap between traditional broadcast and new media for customers in emerging markets. As a combined force, we believe we now offer a global capability in capturing, processing and delivering IP video that is second to none," added Mukherjee.