ITV are making plans to bid for the whole of SMG, it has emerged today. This would include the sale of Virgin Radio along with the commercial television franchise for Scotland.
ITV already have a 17 per-cent stake in SMG, and shares took a dip last week when the Scottish group issued a profits warning.
A source told the Mail on Sunday the ITV boss is just waiting for the right time to buy: 'John Cresswell is clearly most interested in the television franchises, but the deal would be for the full SMG business, including Virgin.'
The Scottish Media Group have already put its cinema advertising business, Pearl and Dean up for sale, and would fit with ITV's own brand, Carlton Screen Advertising.