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Easynet in broadband marriage with Ipsaris

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Easynet has increased its standing as a European broadband player following the agreed merger with Marconi's high capacity optical network business, Ipsaris.

The new operation - which will focus on providing broadband services to business users - will trade under the Easynet brand valuing the enlarged UK plc at around £475 million.

Easynet will acquire Ipsaris in exchange for 82.9 million Easynet shares.

The move will give Easynet a much-needed cash injection to pursue its broadband agenda with the enlarged group having around £314 million of cash to support its growth strategy.

A quarter of Easynet's 27,100 business customers use broadband services but this deal is expected to increase that figure once ipsaris' 3,500 km network of fibre cable is completed later this year.

No job losses are expected to be announced as part of the deal.

David Rowe, chairman and CEO of Easynet, said: "The merger of Easynet and Ipsaris has compelling strategic and financial logic.

"The complementary strengths of Easynet and Ipsaris will enable the enlarged group to accelerate our strategy of delivering broadband services to business customers, " he said. ®

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