C&W moots more UK acquisitions

Wants to be major telco player

Cable & Wireless - the telco even the boss admits was regarded as "down and out" - has ambitions to be a major business telecoms player in the UK.

Last month, C&W bought broadband outfit Bulldog for £19m. In an interview today with The Telegraph, chief exec Francesco Caio suggested there could be more acquisitions in the pipeline. "Our job in the UK is to define the best way of reaching a sustainable and profitable position. Bulldog was a way of accelerating our strategy. Other acquisitions have to be assessed in that context."

The report reels off a number of ISP and telcos that could be of interest to C&W: they include Colt, Easynet, Energis, Kingston, Pipex and Thus.

C&W also likes owning integrated telecoms companies in small countries. This month, it agreed to buy Vivendi's 55 per cent stake in Monaco Telecom for €196m cash. The Caribbean has proved a big cash cow for the firm, but new entrants are making for tougher competition. ®

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