Business as usual for Harris Broadcast


Senior VP Global Sales and Service at Harris Broadcast Communications Richard Scott and regional director (UKISA) Sally Wallington recently visited South Africa following the announcement that parent company, Harris Corporation, is to divest the Broadcast Communications division.

“We’re here to meet with our distributor, Concilium Technologies, as well as the local broadcasters to reaffirm our commitment to South Africa,’ said Scott. “The divesture is a backroom process that will not affect the day-to-day operations of our division.’

Scott stressed that Broadcast Communications has grown into a substantial business in the last five years and can easily become a standalone company. “None of our staff, operations or R&D is embedded within Harris Corporation.’

The first announcement of the divesture was included in a public report of Harris Corporation’s Fiscal 2012 Third Quarter Results released on 1 May.

According to Scott, when former Harris Corporation CEO Howard Lance came to the end of his 10-year term in November last year and was replaced by Bill Brown, the board requested a strategic review of its entire operations.

“Following the review, the board took the decision to focus on the core Harris Corporation businesses – RF antennas and government / military technologies – and to continue to be an innovator in those fields. That leaves the Broadcast Communications division free to focus on our core activities.

“It was under Howard Lance’s tenure that the Broadcast Communications division grew. Howard really was the father of Harris’ bigger broadcast picture and made a number of strategic acquisitions to grow the division. With the exception of cameras, displays and production switchers we offer the full range of broadcast equipment.

Wallington added that the division’s performance over the last year has gone through a number of challenges. “However, we have grown and improved our profit year on year and had an extremely strong presence at the recent NAB2012 Show in Las Vegas. We won awards for several products including the new Magellan NMS networked management system and were honoured with the Best Stand award.
“Our participation at the IBC trade show in Amsterdam in September will be as per usual. We expect to introduce several new products as well as those launched at NAB.’

The immediate plan for the division is to find a new owner for the entire Broadcast Communications concern. Scott continued: “There is no intention to break up the division as we see great value in integrating our product line. In fact, we’ve worked very hard over the past five years to effect this.

“The advantage is that Harris Broadcast Communications is already recognised as a separate entity. Everyone at Broadcast Communications is positive about the latest developments as we believe they will allow us a bigger focus. In the meantime we’ve been working hard to assure our customers all over the world that our operations and roadmaps remain the same and that all contractual obligations will continue to be met,’ commented Scott.

He revealed that he and Wallington are in discussions pertaining to several sales in South Africa of the Selenio media convergence platform, which was launched at NAB last year.

“The Selenio installed base continues to grow at an exceptional pace. Installations span the globe, covering all geographic regions, while addressing a variety of market segments and applications. To date, Selenio has been deployed in over 35 countries,’ concluded Wallington.


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