Two of the broadcast industry's biggest manufacturers, Pro-Bel and Snell and Wilcox, are to merge, creating a new joint company.

The union, rumoured at IBC last year, will - according to the new management of the merged entity - deliver more comprehensive solutions, an expanded pool of engineering talent and enhance the two company's abilities to innovate.

Graham Pitman, chief executive of Pro-Bel said: “The two companies have developed highly complementary product ranges with very little overlap; well-deserved reputations for innovation, product quality and reliability; and a joint commitment to excellence in customer service. Through this merger, the new combined company will build on this strong foundation to create one of the industry's great companies.”

“Our industry is in a period of dynamic transition,” said Simon Derry, chief executive of Snell & Wilcox. “Traditional business models are being rewritten as we embrace the exciting opportunities in the multi-definition, multi-platform world of 21st Century digital media. By joining forces we have created a company that has the talent, technology and resources to meet the evolving needs of our existing customers, while simultaneously taking advantage of new opportunities as they emerge.”

The management of the new company includes members of the executive teams of both companies, including Pitman and Derry. Pitman has been appointed Deputy Chairman of the new company, and Derry will serve as CEO.

The transaction was supported by private equity investors Lloyds TSB Development Capital (LDC) and Advent Venture Partners.

As a result of the merger AmberFin, the Snell & Wilcox spin-off, has separated from its parent company. It remains under the ownership of Advent Venture Partners as an independent entity.

Pro-Bel name develops automation, media management and master control technology as well as routing, control and signal distribution systems

Snell & Wilcox designs and builds systems for video playout, mastering, repurposing, infrastructure, and live production switching.

Further details about the merger are expected to be revealed later today (Friday 6 March)