TVS chiefs poised for 1.5m pounds pay-off if bid succeeds

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THREE executive directors of TVS Entertainment, which will lose its Independent Television franchise on 31 December, are set to share a pay-off of more than pounds 1.5m if a deal to sell the group to one of the largest cable operators in the United States goes through.

International Family Entertainment, run by the Rev Pat Robertson, said it was bidding the equivalent of 26p per ordinary share and 46p per perference share for TVS, valuing the south of England station at pounds 40m.

However, some analysts have argued that the preference shareholders would obtain better terms if the group was placed in liquidation.

It is unlikely that the service contracts of TVS directors would be honoured in a liquidation, but they would expect to receive compensation if IFE buys the group.

The directors' service contracts will be detailed in the offer document, which is not due to be published until the end of November.

However, it is understood that Anthony Brook, the managing director, Richard Adam, the finance director, and Rudolf Agnew, the chairman, are all in line for substantial pay-offs.

Mr Adam has a service contract up to 30 June 1995 paying him pounds 150,000 a year. He would be eligible for compensation of at least pounds 350,000.

Mr Brook receives slightly more and it is understood he has a five-year contract. He could be entitled to a pay-off of pounds 750,000.

It is believed that Mr Agnew has a three-year contract worth pounds 150,000 a year, so he could receive a pay-off of pounds 450,000.

Another director, Mel Blumenthal, receives a salary of dollars 700,000 ( pounds 408,000) a year, according to the group's last set of accounts. However, it is understood that this is paid by MTM, the group's US production company where he is employed, so he may not be entitled to compensation.

TVS lost its franchise after bidding pounds 54.1m to retain it. The Independent Television Commission decreed the offer was so large that TVS would not be able to deliver on its programme promises. Instead, it gave the licence to Meridian Broadcasting.