UTV Image: Maxwell's

Northern Irish broadcaster UTV Media has agreed to sell its brand and televisions stations to ITV in a deal worth £100 million.

UTV launched in the Republic of Ireland at the start of 2015, having been broadcasting in Northern Ireland since 1959. It has struggled to make its mark in the Republic, however, and is expected to make a £12m loss this year.

The UTV brand will remain intact, meaning it will not become ITV Northern Ireland. The part of the business that is now sold will be renamed at a later date.

The deal is still subject to regulatory approval in Ireland and the UK.

Adam Crozier, ITV's chief executive, said: "UTV has been the leading commercial broadcaster in Northern Ireland for many years thanks to its strong regional identity and blend of excellent local programming and strong network shows.

"UTV Television's strategic objectives are closely aligned with our own and we are very pleased that they are joining the ITV family."