NEP Group has acquired VISTA Worldlink, the US-based transmission service provider. 

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Brian Sullivan: NEW investing heavily to become global leader in end-to-end solutions

NEP said the deal would support its aim of becoming the worldwide leader in centralised remote production.

Founded in 1988, VISTA provides end-to-end workflows, transmission and connectivity, and packaged traditional broadcast production solutions to customers in sports, entertainment, news, corporate and a range of other industries, covering thousands of events in North America each year as well as Europe.

NEP chief executive Brian Sullivan said: “Culturally our companies are very much alike—innovative, client-focused and forward-looking—and the addition of VISTA’s experience builds on our existing talent and expertise in Centralized Production and Integrated Services to build for the future. This forms a strong foundation for us to further expand our services across the US and around the globe.

“Another reason we love working with VISTA is their track record in helping new and up-and-coming sports leagues create great brand recognition and content.

“Many of these leagues were underserved before partnering with VISTA. By embracing digital, remote workflows and distribution, VISTA has offered these customers innovative, cost-effective solutions that can flex and expand as their needs grow. This is absolutely an approach we plan to continue.”

In a statement, NEP described an “evolving” broadcast industry with “trends that have accelerated during Covid and are expected to grow in the future. As the market shifts, customers are looking for a known leader capable of delivering new types of workflows and more remote workflow solutions”.

NEP said it is investing heavily in efforts to become “the global leader in innovative, end-to-end solutions” with centralized production “hubs” in Australia, The Netherlands and Norway, with additional capabilities in Switzerland and the UK. Last year, the company launched a “mini hub” in Washington DC as a first step to serve the US market.

NEP said that combined with VISTA’s experience in end-to-end remote workflows and connectivity, it would be able to create the first large-scale, end-to-end Centralized Production Solution in the US and to further expand across the globe.

VISTA president Joshua Liemer added: “In 2017, we strategically pivoted with the goal of becoming the worldwide leader in centralized broadcast solutions, and by joining the NEP family that vision will become a reality.

“Our customers now have access to an even deeper pool of engineering talent and a much broader portfolio of products and solutions with all of the white glove service they’ve enjoyed through VISTA. I see this as a great opportunity to take our business to the next level and take the industry forward.”

VISTA will become a part of NEP’s US Broadcast Services business run by co-Presidents Glen Levine and Howie Rosenthal. Joshua Liemer will continue as President of VISTA and founder Roy Liemer will continue in an advisory role. VISTA will operate out of its existing South Florida facility.