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BT ditches plans to split business

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BT has ditched plans to break-up its business - for the time being at least.

In November last year the monster telco announced it was looking to split its networking and retail business in a bid to overcome increased regulatory pressure from telecoms regulator, Oftel.

Partial sell-offs would also help generate much needed cash for a company that, at the time, was staring at debt mountain fast approaching £30 billion.

Some argued that the split would enable BT's retail division to offer other services including utilities such as gas, water and electricity.

A new network company - called Netco - would supply wholesale services for all telcos including BT Retail.

BT chief exec, Sir Peter Bonfield, made much of the proposals claiming they were "no less dramatic in its way than the original privatisation [of BT] back in 1984" with the creation of a new look BT.

However, this vision of BT's future has now been dropped, according to the FT, which cites unnamed executives at the "heart of the restructuring".

This move doesn't affect the current demerger of BT's mobile phone business. ®

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