Mergers/Acquisitions News

Belden acquires SAM, impact on regional office unknown

Belden has confirmed that it has acquired Snell Advanced Media (SAM) although the financial terms of the deal have not been disclosed. The newly merged company will be headquartered in Montreal and operate under the Grass Valley name with Timothy Shoulders, President of Grass Valley heading the combined entity. Shoulders will work with SAM’s Chief Executive Eric Cooney, who will serve in an advisory role.

This is Belden’s sixth major acquisition in the broadcast industry. Since 2009, when it first bought Telecast Fiber Systems, Belden has been involved in a spate of acquisitions including Miranda Technologies in 2012, Softel in 2013, Grass Valley in 2014 and ThinkLogical, last year.

According to sources, the SAM brand will be retired although some unspecified products from the brand will be retained. More information will be revealed at NAB in April.

With Grass Valley already having a well-staffed office in Dubai, there is considerable speculation about the fate of SAM’s regional office. SAM had hired a number of staff last year to expand its sales team and strengthen its regional operations.

A statement from the company that was released to select press said: “Belden is not intending to broadly communicate the closing of this transaction until we’re in a better position to provide useful information to our employees and customers. We anticipate executing an aggressive external communications effort at 2018 NAB Show where the combined company’s product roadmap will be exhibited on a single stand.”

The statement added: “We’re excited about the advantages this transaction enables us to offer our customers, who continue to deal with a rapidly changing broadcast landscape that includes almost-constantly evolving viewer and advertiser behavior, changing business models and enormous unprecedented competition. To stay competitive, they require support from their suppliers to help increase their efficiency and effectiveness. They need to reach new audiences, across different media, with more dynamic content.

“Today’s announcement improves our overall offering to provide customers with the most comprehensive, innovative selection of products and services, with assured interoperability, and extend our ability to offer in-region support to the global broadcast community.”

Tim Shoulders added: “Our customers face competition and uncertainty like never before. This transaction will help them navigate the technology options available to them with fewer concerns around interoperability and deployment complexity while providing them greater access to the innovators developing the solutions of tomorrow.”

Eric Cooney, former President and CEO, SAM added: “We believe that by becoming part of the Grass Valley family within Belden, we can offer our customers an even greater opportunity to continue growing with us. The collection of talent and technological muscle customers now have at their disposal is unequaled. And, with the backing of Belden, our company has the stability and resources that this industry demands to continue innovating and meet the competition head on.”