Broadband News

OFT to investigate Pipex and Tiscali tie-up

The Office of Fair Trading (OFT) announced today that it will investigate the recent acquisition of the Pipex broadband and voice customers by Tiscali. The £210 million deal came after an announcement by Pipex in March that it was up for sale.

The OFT could impose conditions on the merger or refer the deal to the Competition Commission for further investigation. Mergers last year included the UK arm of AOL being bought by Carphone Warehouse and BSkyB purchasing Easynet. These deals went through without a hitch, and this could explain why the deal was pointed to the OFT voluntarily by the parties involved, so as to avoid any investigations further down the line. UBS is still advising Pipex for the sale of the remainder of the business. More information at the Times Online.


It is the Wi-Max license that businesses should be snapping up. Years ago WI-FI was expensive and laughed at, now everyone is using it.

I would think 123-reg will get bought up quite quickly.

  • gayboy-ds
  • over 13 years ago

Huh? In addition to the "mergers" John mentions, last year BT bought Plusnet (incorporating Metronet), and more recently BT bought Brightview, with Ofcom barely noticing. Now Pipex (with very very roughly the same number of broadband punters as Plusnet) being bought by Tiscali gets referred voluntarily to Ofcom? Who's kidding who, and why?

As for Wi-Max: Pipex wouldn't be involved at all if Intel Capital hadn't put the money up (Intel being a big WiMax player, and still desperately looking for a real success story).

  • c_j_
  • over 13 years ago

I'm glad I wasn't the only one thinking WTF, it seems BT can go around buying up anyone without so much as a 2nd look from the OFT, yet when two smaller players try it, the OFT wants to know about it.

  • KarlAustin
  • over 13 years ago

OFT investigating Pipex and Tiscali... surely the circus hasnt finally got a ring master??

  • over 13 years ago

The regulators really dont like tiscali do they, and a 3rd wtf from me if this is investigated how are BT buying up isps?

  • chrysalis
  • over 13 years ago

I think its because Pipex and Tiscali had a relationship before Tiscali bought them. Pipex were using Tiscali staff and infrastructure to provide some of the call bundle deal services. BT probably dont get investigated as when they bought out the likes of Plusnet the only relationship previously with Plusnet and BT was Plusnet had to use BT lines to provide subscribers with a service. Pipex and Tiscali clearly had more links between thereself so the deal does kinda whiff a bit.

  • over 13 years ago

I believe that OFTEL are completely correct in investigating such a merger. I think it about time, that totally useless companies such as Tiscali, have their wings clipped. I have never in my 35 years in business, had to deal with such an unprofessional outfit. Their customer service simply does not exist. It is about time, this company stops its relentless expansion plans and start to provide a good customer service,a service that is paid for, demanded by its customers and one that the company has a responsibility for.

Nick the Greek.

  • hanoverbm
  • over 13 years ago

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