A spokesperson for BBC Resources said: “If we are unable to reach an agreement on post, and staff arrangements will be central, we will retain this division and consider other solutions.”
BBC Outside Broadcasts will be sold to sport and news programming and data specialist SIS for a fee believed to be around£20m and the contract should be signed in the next few weeks.
The revenue generated from the sale may be disappointing for the BBC as it has been suggested the reserve price was£50m.
The way the sale of each of the three divisions of BBC Resources has progressed so far is “exactly as expected”, according to Neil Hatton, chair of the UK Screen Broadcast working group.
He said: “Regarding the post division, the master plan always seemed to have a piece missing. The BBC's factual and learning departments set up in-house facilities and two major departments will move to Manchester. The missing piece is clients.”
Although SIS is not traditionally an OB company the acquisition of BBC Outside Broadcasts will complement its core business in two ways. Sislink, a division of the company, provides sport uplink to ITN sport, Sky Sports, ITV regional news and the European Golf Tour. On each of these jobs, OB services are provided by another company.
The company also produces content for the At the Races channel which covers 750 race meetings. Once its current OB contracts have expired, the company will look to provide its own OB facilities.
On the subject of future contracts - which include Wimbledon, the Olympics, the Proms, Formula 1 and the Six Nations - chief executive David Holdgate said: “Some of them are really quite significant, and guarantee a comfort of continuity for both ourselves [who will be dependent on BBC work] and the BBC.”
Regarding staff commitments Holdgate said: “We satisfactorily met enough of what was asked of us. I understand that the staff, unions and BBC are happy.”