BT scoops up NSB Retail's UK ops

£17m cash

BT is buying the UK operations of NSB Retail for £17m cash. The acquisition extends BT's move into the IT services sector, and takes NSB closer to becoming a pure-play software company.

NSB will continue to develop and own its software, while BT will become its exclusive distributor in the UK and Ireland. BT will also have non-exclusive distribution rights in Europe and will stump up license fees from software sales. NSB continues to run a services operation in North America, but today's announcement shows that it would really rather have other, bigger companies handling distribution and installation.

Around 150 NSB staff will transfer to a new BT unit called BTExpedite. BT aims to sell other comms and IT services through its Syntegra arm to NSB's customers. These include Arcadia, Lloyds Pharmacy, BhS, Oasis, WH Smith, Woolworths, Brown Thomas, Roches Stores, Monsoon and Austin Reed. ®