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Failure to Sell – CEO of UK ISP Daisy Group Exits the Building

Wednesday, Jun 27th, 2018 (8:40 am) - Score 6,367

Business communications and broadband provider Daisy Group has officially parted ways with their CEO, Neil Muller. The move follows several seemingly failed attempts to find a buyer for the £1bn business, which is a saga that has played out over the past couple of years (officially the ‘for sale‘ sign only went up last year).

Mullers approach of growing the business through acquisitions (e.g. gobbling TalkTalk’s B2B business for £175m – adding c.80,000 SoHo, SME and large enterprise clients / contracts), while at the same time finding a new buyer, simply didn’t work. This is despite interest being shown from various private equity groups and some questionable rumours of interest from both Vodafone and Virgin Media (Liberty Global).

Prior to the TalkTalk deal Daisy was said to have around 60,000 customers (plus approximately 4,000 staff), which includes a large number of popular high street retailers. But the company is more of a circuit aggregator and doesn’t have their own physical network infrastructure in the same way as either Virgin Media or Openreach, which might have contributed to doubts about their £1bn price tag (some reports suggested £1.5bn).

All those acquisitions were also expensive long-term investments for a company that last year reported a loss of £58.9m (worse than £55m in 2016 – see Daisy’s 2017 Accounts).

A Spokesperson for Daisy Group said:

“Having successfully led the significant transformation of the Group over the last three and a half years, Neil Muller has decided that now is the right time to pursue a new direction. Neil is extremely proud of what Daisy has achieved over recent years, and thanks the entire Daisy team, customers, partners, and shareholders for their incredible support.

Neil will continue to watch with interest as the company continues its ongoing development and success.”

Muller’s departure has also resulted in the company’s Founder and Chairman, Matthew Riley, taking full control of the business again and re-assuming the position of CEO.

By Mark Jackson
Mark is a professional technology writer, IT consultant and computer engineer from Dorset (England), he also founded ISPreview in 1999 and enjoys analysing the latest telecoms and broadband developments. Find me on X (Twitter), Mastodon, Facebook and .
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