Arqiva Reports Strong Financial Results

But its investors are considering an exit
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LONDON �Arqiva provides much of the infrastructure behind the UK's terrestrial radio and TV networks, in addition to communications infrastructure used by mobile telecoms network operators and satellite TV broadcasters. It is a 5G pioneer and is operating the first European fixed wireless access trial in London this summer in partnership with Samsung; and the company also has a role in the deployment of machine-to-machine connectivity devices, such as smart meters for energy and water, according to a516digital.com.

In the nine months up to the 31st of March, Arqiva reported an 8% increase in revenue in the area of terrestrial broadcasting, some of which is from radio contracts resulting from the Digital Audio Broadcasting roll-out. By the end of March the company had built 161 new transmitters for the BBC as part of the corporation's "Phase 4" plan to boost BBC National DAB network coverage to more than 97% of the population. The final two sites of the 163 required to deliver the current phase of the program are expected to be complete by June.

The company also says it is also progressing with the delivery of commercial local DAB, a program which is part of an initiative to meet the local DAB coverage threshold of 90% set by the UK Government and achieved in September 2016 with the completion of 185 new sites. Arqiva is delivering new transmitters or upgrades at 221 sites and by the 31st of March had completed 208 of them. The final sites for this phase will be completed during summer 2017 taking local DAB coverage to over 91%. Arqiva has reported strong demand for capacity on its DAB multiplexes with new stations continuing to join the terrestrial digital radio platform, according to the same article.�

Arqiva is owned (48%) by Canada Pension Plan Investment Board and (40%) by Australian private equity investors Macquarie and IFM. These investors are widely reported to be seeking a sale of their stakes in the business, reports advanced-television.com. A statement from Arqiva said: �Arqiva�s shareholders are jointly undertaking a strategic review of their investment which may lead to a transaction involving their interests in Arqiva. There is no certainty that the strategic review will result in any transaction. A further announcement will be made as and when appropriate.�

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