Sky rumoured to be eyeing TalkTalk acquisition
Sky is rumoured to be planning a bid for rival communications giant TalkTalk in response to BT's recent acquisition of live Premier League broadcasting rights.
BT shocked the market last month by announcing it will spend £738 million over the next three years to screen 38 live matches from the top tier of English football per season.
According to Lawrence Sugarman of Liberum Capital, Sky could be tempted to make a play for TalkTalk in an effort to boost its presence in the broadband market and potentially give it the edge over BT.
"We believe Sky is keen to build on its broadband position," the analyst told the London Evening Standard, adding that such a move "could be an ideal way to launch a response" to BT's substantial outlay on football rights.
If the acquisition were to go ahead, it would create the biggest broadband provider in the UK. As of March 31st 2012, Sky had 3.9 million broadband subscribers, while TalkTalk's customer base stood at four million in the same period.
In comparison, just over six million people are signed up to broadband with BT.
Sir Charles Dunstone, co-founder of The Carphone Warehouse, currently owns almost one-third of TalkTalk.