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.