Unitel to sell mobile TV unit

NMT deal helps co. repay debts

Cash-strapped Unitel Video, a major provider of services to the television and film industries, announced an agreement Monday to sell its mobile TV production assets to National Mobile Television.

Terms were not disclosed, but Unitel CEO Barry Knepper said the deal would allow his firm to “repay a majority of its outstanding debt and focus on investing in its studio and post-production divisions.”

Its mobile video division is based in Pittsburgh and Burbank, Calif.

New York-based Unitel said it expected its Unitel Mobile Video unit to continue to operate under the same name and as a separate entity even after a deal closes with Seattle-based NMT, the country’s leading provider of mobile television production studios for sporting events.

NMT, mostly owned by a private fund managed by Oaktree Capital Management, televises more than 7,000 events a year for the NBA, NFL, NHL, PGA and others. “I, my management team and Unitel Mobile Video employees will continue to operate as they have in the past,” said Richard Clouser, president of Unitel Mobile Video.

NMT CEO Steven Clifford added that Unitel division his firm expects to absorb by the end of June would “gain much greater financial flexibility and access to new technology.”

Unitel stock declined 3% Tuesday to close at $2 a share. In the past year, it has traded between $6.13 and $1.25.