MS&L on alert as OpenTV mulls global agency hire

CALIFORNIa: OpenTV, the US company that produces interactive TV systems, is looking to appoint a ­global comms agency.

Nasdaq-listed OpenTV's primary business is selling set-top boxes and software that allows TVs to be used interactively.

The California-based company's V-P of worldwide comms Barbara Cassidy confirmed: ‘We are considering enlisting a global PR firm. We will also continue to work with our US representative, Brainerd Communicators.'

OpenTV's software and hardware are used by most ­cable, satellite and broadband TV network operators, and companies including Amstrad, Sony and Toshiba. Its products are used by more than 70 million customers worldwide.

The move will alert Manning Selvage & Lee, which ran unspecified projects for OpenTV earlier this year and is likely to be among the frontrunners for the contract.

In the past month, Liberty Media, a principal shareholder in OpenTV, ceded its shares to Swiss security software company Kudelski. The deal, worth more than £50m, should be completed early next year.

As a result of the move, Jim Chiddix, OpenTV's chairman and CEO, will become vice-chairman, and Kudelski founder Andre Kudelski will become chairman.

OpenTV recorded a net loss of just under £1m through the third quarter of 2006. In the same period
last year, the firm lost more than £2m.

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