Do Virgin Media's bosses believe there is a circle of life? Well, the news that Italian ISP Tiscali has announced its intention to buy the broadband and voice assets of Pipex Communications could see something 'quite remarkable', as the grand old man of sports commentary, David Coleman, was not averse to saying.
A takeover of Tiscali by its larger rivals, BT, Sky and Virgin Media, has been an enduring fixture at rumour central for a fair while. Whenever I phoned to ask if any of the rumours were true, I got the standard response – 'no'. However, in the business jungle today, firms saying 'no' can have that response converted to a 'yes', providing enough folding drink vouchers are wafted upwind of key executives.
At the minute, there's seems to be nothing in the way of the UK Office of Fair Trading rubber stamping this and giving the happy couple a cheery wave as they start their honeymoon. But after the dust settles what then? Could the new Tiscali, with over two million broadband customers, survive in the cut-throat UK broadband market – or would someone make them an offer they couldn't refuse?
Tiscali recently copped hold of the Sky channels that Virgin Media and Sky are battling it out in court over. Imagine Virgin Media making a winning bid for Tiscali 'x' months down the line – well, at least some of its customers could then reach for the Sky.
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