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BSkyB pulls out of Tiscali acquisition?

by Scott Bicheno on 23 December 2008, 11:24

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Buyer’s market

Back in May Italian ISP Tiscali, which is the fourth biggest ISP in the UK with a 15 percent market share, put itself up for sale.

As we reported at the time, initially the silence was deafening. Then it emerged that Carphone Warehouse was having a sniff, but stressed it wouldn't pay over the odds for Tiscali. We must assume that Tiscali was asking too much, because we've heard no further news on that story.

Then, in early November, it was confirmed that BSkyB was in talks with Tiscali...then nothing. Well it looks like Tiscali has gone and priced itself out of the market again, because a large number of media are reporting today that BSkyB has pulled out over price.

We spoke to BSkyB's corporate communications people, but they were staying completely tight-lipped on the matter. However, this story is being reported as fact by many media.

BSkyB has managed to organically overtake Tiscali in terms of subscriber numbers and so doesn't ‘need' to buy it. So Tiscali finds itself trying to haggle over price on what is very much a buyer's market.

It's not clear exactly what price Tiscali is putting on itself, but we wouldn't be at all surprised if it's less than Carphone Warehouse were considering paying earlier in the year.

Tiscali's market cap at time of writing was around €470 million on a share price of €0.76. In may the share price was more like €2.5.



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