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France Telecom takes stake in NTL

Successful talks lead to $1 billion investment plan

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France Telecom (FT) has, as anticipated, made a major move on the UK cable market with a $1 billion investment in NTL. Right now, FT will take a ten per cent stake in NTL, but that will be increased if NTL is successful in its bid to buy Cable & Wireless Communications (CWC), the cable subsidiary of Cable & Wireless Plc. CWC is, of course, talking to UK cable company Telewest, and has been since April. That hasn't stopped speculation that NTL, the remaining member of the UK's cable triumvirate, might be interested too -- and, according to the Financial Times, NTL has indeed offered $12.5 billion for CWC. ®

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