Excite tunes in to chello

It's broadband, but much bigger

Excite@Home and chello have confirmed that the two companies are to create a new business in a bid to grab a large chunk of the emerging broadband market outside the US.

The US broadband company confirmed today that its international operations would merge with the Dutch broadband outfit to create a new company - Excite Chello.

The new company will provide broadband access and content to consumers giving Excite Chello the largest broadband footprint and subscriber base outside of the US, executives said.

The new company - valued at more than $5 billion - will have operations in 15 countries and the exclusive rights to deliver broadband Net services to more than 30 million cable homes.

The company will also have the exclusive rights to deliver TV set-top box services to more than 10.5 million cable homes.

It will commence operations with some 300,000 broadband subscribers.

New media content group, Liberty Media, is to invest £124 million into the business. Excite@Home and UnitedGlobalCom (UPC), the parent of chello, will each invest £70 million in the business.

chello's IPO - which was announced in March - has been spiked as a result of this alliance. Executives at Excite Chello said they hope to IPO the new business early next year. ®

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