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    Branson challenges BSkyB over ITV

    This is a discussion on Branson challenges BSkyB over ITV within the Website news forums, part of the SkyUser Announcements category; Sir Richard Branson has called on the Office of Fair Trading to intervene after satellite broadcaster BSkyB bought a stake ...

    1. #1
      Keiran2K8's Avatar
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      Branson challenges BSkyB over ITV

      Sir Richard Branson has called on the Office of Fair Trading to intervene after satellite broadcaster BSkyB bought a stake in ITV.


      BSkyB spent 940m on 17.9% of ITV shares late on Friday - a move widely seen as a way of scuppering a move by NTL to take over ITV.

      Sir Richard, NTL's biggest stakeholder, said BSkyB's move was "a blatant attempt to distort competition".

      But BSkyB has hit back, saying it had done nothing wrong.


      Ownership restrictions

      Sir Richard said he may also complain to the European Commission and regulator Ofcom.

      He became a 10.5% shareholder in NTL when he sold Virgin Mobile to the firm earlier this year.

      Earlier this month, NTL said it had approached ITV about combining the two companies. The offer was reported to be more than 5bn.


      Sir Richard seems to believe that he and his partners in NTL have a unique right to acquire ITV
      BSkyB

      Q&A: BSkyB, ITV and NTL

      "BSkyB's move is a blatant attempt to distort competition even further by blocking any attempt to create a strong and meaningful competitor," Sir Richard said.

      "BSkyB is positioned to strongly influence ITV's operations in a manner that favours BSkyB's long-term plans rather than the interests of the other 82% percent of ITV shareholders who weren't offered a sweetheart deal on Friday."

      Current UK media ownership rules mean the satellite broadcaster is prevented from controlling more than 20% in ITV.

      And BSkyB said that because its stake was below this threshold, it was entitled to invest.

      "Sir Richard seems to believe that he and his partners in NTL-Telewest have a unique right to acquire ITV," a company statement said.

      'Legal advice'

      Mr Branson's spokesman, Will Whitehorn, said earlier that that BSkyB had taken a stake in ITV "in order to prevent a transformational deal that would have increased competition in the UK".

      "This is a blatant breach, if not of the broadcasting legislation, then of the Enterprise Act," he said.

      Mr Whitehorn added that BSkyB - which is 39% owned by Rupert Murdoch's News Corporation - had made it clear it "did not intend to be a passive investor".

      But an unnamed BSkyB director told the Financial Mail it had taken large amounts of legal advice before amassing the stake in ITV.

      "We are confident we are protected against any Branson-style attack," he said.

      Earlier reports suggested Germany's RTL may also make a bid - though those rumours appear to have cooled.

      ITV has been under pressure after being hit by declining advertising revenue. It is also without a chief executive.


      from BBC News at bbcnews.com Full Article @ http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/business/6163162.stm
      Last edited by NewsreadeR; 20-11-06 at 06:13 PM.


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    3. #2
      Alan b's Avatar
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      Its hardly a surprise that Branson has come out on the attack, I suppose it will be down to the likes of Ofcom to decide if this move by Sky was legal.

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      I think SkyUser.co.uk should be a bit more careful when it comes to republishing copyrighted materiel in its news section and copryrighted photos directly from http://newsimg.bbc.co.uk/media/images/ on its' front page.

      A summary of the story together with a link would be more prudent.

      IMHO

      http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/help/3281849.stm
      Last edited by Johnny7; 20-11-06 at 08:32 AM.
      John in High Wycombe

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      Johnny! You will find that all articles posted have, Full Article @ www...??? Below!

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      @ FibreOptic
      The point here is the Full Article was re-published here which (unless permission has been obtained), is a breach of copyright law.

      Secondly, an embedded link calling a file from the BBC servers, http://newsimg.bbc.co.uk/media/image...son_pa203a.jpg, was also used. This is very bad netiquette and again breaches copyright laws, unless express permision has been sought and obtained by skyuser.co.uk.

      I like to see posters bringing our attention to news items we may have missed; my concern here is for the reputaion of Skyuser.
      John in High Wycombe

    7. #6
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      @Johnny7, Thanx for your comments! All feedback was appreciated!

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      tbh - The news story should not have been made by a member, we have now changed the permissions of the forum, so only an admin can do this.


      ~ Never, ever, argue with an idiot. They'll drag you down to their level and beat you with experience ~


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      NewsreadeR's Avatar
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      Dear Aquib,

      Thank you for your email.

      Yes, we can grant you permission to reprint the text only of this BBC
      News Online article - no logo's, graphics or images. Can you also
      please
      credit the BBC in the following way - 'from BBC News at bbcnews.com'

      Thank you for your interest in the BBC News website.

      Regards
      BBC News Website
      http://news.bbc.co.uk/"[/B]

      Full Article @ http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/business/6163162.stm


      ~ Never, ever, argue with an idiot. They'll drag you down to their level and beat you with experience ~


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