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Internet giant Tiscali fighting for survival

Italian owned UK broadband provider Tiscali is today fighting for survival after the company asked its banks to suspend loan repayments. The apparent collapse of a planned sale of the UK assets to BSkyB seems to have pushed the company over the edge and could potentially put 750 jobs in the UK at risk. The company is rumoured to have debts approaching €557 million and had deadlines on Wednesday and Friday for interest payments totalling €11 million.

The company has been under serious pressure to dispose of its UK business although the demise of the UK economy and the lack of funding saw a significant number of parties whittled down to one, i.e. BSkyB. While only last week it was rumoured the BSkyB deal was all but done it apparently collapsed when BSkyB offered just £350 million as opposed to the £500 million expected by Tiscali. The BSkyB sale was vital if the group was to survive a potential financial crisis which has now seen Tiscali enter a period of restructuring and detailed talks with bankers.

The has been some concern about the Tiscali operation for some time although just last week the BSkyB deal seem to have been done and everything seemed to be going to plan. This is the first major collapse of a leading UK Internet provider and many believe it will not be the last.

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