Freeserve confirms sale talks

Wanadoo linked to buyout

  • alert
  • submit to reddit

Build a business case: developing custom apps

Freeserve has confirmed it is once again holding negotiations that could lead to the sale of Britain's biggest ISP.

Sources reportedly close to the deal claim French ISP, Wanadoo, is in the frame for the buyout, although both parties are refusing to talk.

Indeed, a deal may be further advanced than some might think since Freeswerve and Wanadoo were touted as a possible match more than a month ago.

Yesterday, Freeswerve refused to comment on "speculation and rumour" concerning a possible sale. Today, it has confirmed that it is in talks but refuses to name names.

In a statement issued today Freeswerve said the talks "may or may not lead to an offer being made" adding that it was "unlikely that any such offer would be at a substantial premium to Freeserve's share price".

News of the possible tie-up has failed to kick-start market interest in the ISP. Early morning trading saw Freeswerve's share price rise to 165p before sliding back to 148p by coffee time.

It's a far cry from the heady days of March 2000 when Freeswerve shares were more than 900p.

Wanadoo is owned by France Telecom and is France's biggest ISP with interests in Spain, Belgium, the Netherlands, Denmark and Morocco.

In June, talks between Freeswerve and Germany's T-Online collapsed after both parties couldn't agree on a price. They also cited "culture" as a stumbling block.

At the time, Freeswerve carried a price tag of £6 billion. Some estimates claim Freeserve has been knocked down to £1.8 billion. ®

Related Story

French 'want Freeserve'

Boost IT visibility and business value

More from The Register

next story
Kate Bush: Don't make me HAVE CONTACT with your iPHONE
Can't face sea of wobbling fondle implements. What happened to lighters, eh?
Video of US journalist 'beheading' pulled from social media
Yanked footage featured British-accented attacker and US journo James Foley
Caught red-handed: UK cops, PCSOs, specials behaving badly… on social media
No Mr Fuzz, don't ask a crime victim to be your pal on Facebook
Ballmer leaves Microsoft board to spend more time with his b-balls
From Clippy to Clippers: Hi, I see you're running an NBA team now ...
Online tat bazaar eBay coughs to YET ANOTHER outage
Web-based flea market struck dumb by size and scale of fail
Amazon takes swipe at PayPal, Square with card reader for mobes
Etailer plans to undercut rivals with low transaction fee offer
Assange™: Hey world, I'M STILL HERE, ignore that Snowden guy
Press conference: ME ME ME ME ME ME ME (cont'd pg 94)
Call of Duty daddy considers launching own movie studio
Activision Blizzard might like quality control of a CoD film
US regulators OK sale of IBM's x86 server biz to Lenovo
Now all that remains is for gov't offices to ban the boxes
prev story


Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Top 10 endpoint backup mistakes
Avoid the ten endpoint backup mistakes to ensure that your critical corporate data is protected and end user productivity is improved.
Top 8 considerations to enable and simplify mobility
In this whitepaper learn how to successfully add mobile capabilities simply and cost effectively.
Rethinking backup and recovery in the modern data center
Combining intelligence, operational analytics, and automation to enable efficient, data-driven IT organizations using the HP ABR approach.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.