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Vodafone Moots Carphone Warehouse/Tiscali Tie-Up

Posted: 12th May, 2008 By: MarkJ
Reports indicate that Vodafone may be planning to make a partnership proposal to The Carphone Warehouse (AOL, TalkTalk), albeit only if Carphone were to gain control of Tiscali. Vodafone, which has so far failed to establish a significant presence in the UK ISP market, might then seek to drop BT as its broadband supplier:

Vodafone has itself been keen to buy the UK arm of Tiscali but for far less than the £800m asking price. City sources say that the deal between The Carphone Warehouse and America's Best Buy has changed everything. Until now, BT has had a two-way deal with Vodafone, with each company reselling the other's products.

'If Carphone Warehouse boss Charles Dunstone bought Tiscali and became the UK's biggest internet firm, Vodafone would reconsider its arrangement with BT,' said one source. Vodafone sources said that no talks had taken place with The Carphone Warehouse, which was ditched last year as a seller of Vodafone mobile phone contracts.

The thisismoney report would be bad news for BT and it's outgoing CEO, Ben Verwaayen, whom will reveal the operators latest annual results on Thursday. Meanwhile Tiscali is to begin reviewing any interest for the sale of its broadband business today, which is expected to include a non-bidding bid from Carphone.
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