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Business Serve snaps up Vital Online

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Lancaster-based ISP, Business Serve, has snapped up its fifth acquisition since it floated on AIM in February 2004. It's paying £200,000 in cash and a bundle of shares for business-focused ISP Vital Online Ltd.

Vital - which has a turnover of around £700,000 and flogs stuff like leased lines and broadband - will continue to trade under its own name as part of the Business Serve Group.

It's been a busy six months for Business Serve. In March, it acquired automated online company, Domain Names GB.com Ltd, for £400,000 in cash and ISP RealTouch Internet Ltd for £60,000. In May it paid £1.87m to buy Manchester-based Designer Servers Ltd, a small ISP which offers managed servers and hosting for a range of customers including Panasonic.

In July, Business Serve plc stumped up £404,000 to add KB Media Limited - which flogs broadband targeted at the reseller market - to its stable of companies.

The ISP now employs over 180 people and claims has more than 40,000 business customers. ®

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