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OB companies CTV and Telegenic to operate under EMG brand

EMG UK CEO Peter Bates discusses the impact of Arena Television's collapse on the OB market

EMG Group is bringing its OB companies CTV and Telegenic under one brand.

CTV and Telegenic employees in the UK and US will now work for EMG and continue to be based in High Wycombe and Atlanta, Georgia, respectively.

The company said for the time being some CTV golf trucks will retain their traditional green livery.

CTV delivered its first OB truck in 1983, with the fleet had growing tenfold over the last 40 years. It was acquired by EMG in 2007. Telegenic was acquired by EMG in 2019, as part of a strategy to grow its business in the UK and Europe. It operates a fleet of 15 OB and production trucks and employs around 100 people across production, admin, and management.

As parr of the rebrand, EMG’S international sales branch will be further strengthened. Eamonn Curtin has been appointed international sales director in the EMG Group. Angela Gibbons succeeds Curtin as sales director of EMG UK. Both will continue to be based at EMG’s UK HQ in High Wycombe.

EMG has seen increased demand for its OB vehicles in recent months following the collapse of Arena Television.

Speaking to TVBEurope, Peter Bates, CEO, EMG UK, paid tribute to the staff at the collapsed company, describing what happened as an “absolute tragedy” for the staff. “It was unbelievably badly managed from from the top,” he added, “and when actually you speak to people who were part of that company and helped build the company, they were totally oblivious to what’s going on. After the collapse, there was a kind of rallying round of the industry, a bit like when when NEP’s trucks caught fire, because you still have clients who’ve got programmes to get on the air.”

Bates admitted that he believes the collapse of Arena will make it harder for other OB companies to secure finance in the future. “I think it’s rocked the asset funding players fundamentally because clearly their due diligence was not up to scratch, and there’s over 50 lenders involved,” he said.

“It’s tarnished industry a bit. On the inside, it’s galvanised everyone, a lot of the good staff have found homes now and a lot have got a good freelance career because of their background. But externally, because it’s made the national press, I’m convinced the next time we go and borrow money against a large asset, there’ll be a lot more scrutiny.”