TalkTalk Buys Struggling Tiscali

Gets a fraction of its asking price but is put out its misery.

There’s a skill to negotiations. If you’re the seller it’s about picking the optimal time to sell and getting the best possible price. I wonder if someone could explain this concept to Tiscali…

The ISP which last May turned down a £550m takeover bid from Carphone Warehouse (demanding over £1.13bn) then rejected a £450m November sale to Sky has now concluded terms once again with the Carphone Warehouse… for £236m!

Strictly the deal is with TalkTalk, but this is simply Carphone’s broadband arm and it creates the UK’s largest ISP with more than 4.25m customers covering over 25 per cent of households.

“Six years ago, no one could have imagined that we would build the largest residential broadband provider in the UK, but our determination to offer incredible value with the latest technology has propelled us to being the most popular provider in the country,” says Carphone Warehouse CEO Charles Dunstone. “Combining Tiscali with TalkTalk creates a unique platform that will allow us to innovate faster and provide an even better service for our enlarged customer base.”

Combining Tiscali with TalkTalk also achieves something else: it gets Tiscali out of the very deep hole it had dug itself. Once the predator who snapped up Homechoice and the Pipex broadband division in 2007 alone, Tiscali had fallen into problems with its own creditors in recent months, cut off email accounts following domain renewal problems and even suffered extensive outages after it was victim to a major cable being cut during developments at the Olympic village!

Yep, sometimes it is better to just call it a day. Even if Tiscali must be weeping at the deals it previously rejected…

Nice move Carphone Warehouse – enjoy that smug feeling.

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