Three additional equipment dealers have been added to the list of companies that can sell cameras, lenses and VTRs to the BBC.

MitCorp, Pro Kit and Top Teks have all been added to the BBC video acquisition preferred supplier list, taking the total number of companies to 11.

They join fellow dealers Visual Impact, Feltech, Pyser-SGI and Total Audio and manufacturers Sony, JVC, Panasonic and Thomson Grass Valley.

The BBC will spend an estimated£3m with these companies on HD and SD camcorders, camera systems, VTRs, lenses, portable storage devices and other peripherals from 1 May 2008 onwards.

The preferred supplier list, officially known as the Video Acquisition Framework Agreement, will run for a year but the BBC has the option to extend it by another six or 12 months.

MitCorp managing director Mark Forth said being part of the framework would offer the chance to compete for BBC business on a level playing field.

“The BBC is a huge organisation, often unfathomable from a supplier's point of view,” he said. “We now have access to the majority of purchasers within the BBC via a centrally controlled portal. It takes much of the investigatory legwork out of getting the opportunities and lets us concentrate on offering a high level of service and value for money.”

The 11 companies will have their equipment price lists made available electronically to all BBC staff and departments throughout the country that purchase shooting and recording kit.

They were put through a stringent selection process based on their technology offerings, levels of stock and service and their ability to provide value for money and technological innovation. Each qualifying company also had to divulge confidential financial information.

The door to camera equipment provision to the BBC is now all but closed for the next 12 months on any companies not on the list.