DirecTV said today that it will purchase control of 180 Connect, which is one of North America’s largest providers of installation, integration and fulfillment services.

Under the terms of the deal, which is slated to close in the third quarter, DirecTV will acquire 100 percent of 180 Connect’s outstanding common stock and exchangeable shares for $1.80 per share.

By acquiring 180 Connect, DirecTV gains control of one of its largest installation and home service providers in 45 U.S. market locations throughout California, Colorado, Oregon, Washington State, Utah, Montana, Idaho, Wyoming, Arkansas, Virginia, Hawaii and western Pennsylvania.

Prior to the acquisition, DirecTV had outsourced all of its installation service operations through 13 home service provider companies.

“The acquisition of 180 Connect enables DirecTV to gain operational control over a large portion of its installation and service network and is an important part of our effort to continuously improve the customer experience,” said Mike Palkovic, EVP of operations for DirecTV.

In a separate transaction, UniTek USA has agreed to acquire 100 percent of 180 Connect’s cable services operating unit and certain DirecTV installation services markets in exchange for UniTek’s satellite installation services in New York City and Burbank and Bloomington, Calif., as well as cash. The transaction is expected to be completed after DirecTV’s acquisition of 180 Connect.

“UniTek is pleased to participate in this highly strategic transaction with DirecTV that strengthens our position as the premier provider in telecom, cable and satellite service,” said Scott Hisey, CEO of UniTek. “This transaction will substantially expand the scale and footprint of our cable service division, and we look forward to continuing to provide outstanding service to 180 Connect’s cable customers.”

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Broadband Briefs for 4/18/08