Red Bee Media, formerly a wholly-owned subsidiary of the BBC and now a separate commercial company, has retained the contract to manage interactive services on behalf of the corporation for the next five years. It has also assumed responsibility for the playout of Channel 4 in addition to providing services to the BBC and other broadcasters.
The BBC put the provision of its interactive services out to competitive tender earlier this year but the incumbent prevailed over other bids, including a joint venture from BT and ioko.
Red Bee Media will continue to provide a comprehensive playout and operational managed service for interactive television, online services, systems management and support. The contract is believed to be worth around £25 million and will last for five years, renewable for a further two.
“I am delighted that we have been successful in retaining this contract with the BBC,” said Pam Masters, the chief executive of Red Bee Media, who recently announced that she would be stepping down from her role at the end of the year. “This contract underlines our commitment to being at the forefront of multiplatform content fulfilment in the linear and non-linear space.”
Red Bee Media has also assumed control of playout services for Channel 4 in an outsourcing arrangement. Around 100 staff have transferred to Red Bee Media as part of the deal. The playout of Channel 4 will transfer to facilities at the Broadcast Centre on the BBC campus in White City over the next year.
The company was formed in 2005 from the sale the BBC Broadcast business for £166 million to an investment group led by Macquarie Capital Alliance Group.