Proposed BSkyB deal under a Cloud?

1 Feb 2011

The recently announced acquisition of public Wi-Fi provider The Cloud by British triple-play provider BSkyB is currently being examined by the UK’s antitrust regulator, Bloomberg reports. It is understood that the study by the Office of Fair Trading (OFT) aims to determine whether the proposed deal will result in a merger situation, which could in turn see a ‘substantial lessening of competition’. BSkyB announced its intention to purchase the Wi-Fi operator last week, in a deal believed to be worth less than GBP50 million (USD80 million), with a view to the acquisition allowing it to offer wireless broadband services together with its Sky Anywhere product, which allows access to Sky content on multiple mobile devices. In response to the announced examination of the deal, BSkyB spokesman Stephen Gaynor said a letter to the OFT had been written, with BSkyB suggesting that there is no reason for the watchdog to review the matter. ‘As is entirely standard practice for a deal of this nature, the OFT has now invited any interested parties to submit comments on the proposed deal … It does not impact deal completion,’ said Gaynor.

United Kingdom, Sky, The Cloud