23 June 2009 – London, UK: TalkTalk could use its acquisition of Tiscali UK to pave the way for the launch of its own branded on-demand broadband TV service, according to Top 10 Broadband.
Pending regulatory approval, TalkTalk is due to complete the £236 million takeover of rival ISP Tiscali at the end of this month, creating the UK’s largest residential UK broadband provider. The deal will also see TalkTalk acquire the Tiscali TV service, which offers 70 digital channels and movies on-demand.
When the purchase was agreed in May this year, TalkTalk’s CEO Charles Dunston implied that the acquisition will bring a “significant additional dimension to the group” and that there were no plans to discontinue funding any facets of Tiscali’s business.
Meanwhile, David Goldie, corporate development director at TalkTalk, hinted that the takeover would provide the platform for an “exciting program of product innovation and development over the next year".
On-demand TV is proving a huge draw for rival ISPs. This was highlighted when Sky recently confirmed that 15 per cent of its customers now take all three services - on-demand TV, home telephone and broadband - from their provider.
According to Alex Buttle, marketing director at Top 10 Broadband, an on-demand re-branded broadband TV service is likely to be among the product launches upon which the new entity will embark.
Mr Buttle said: “Buying Tiscali has given TalkTalk the perfect opportunity to launch an on-demand broadband TV service.
“Not only will the new entity have a vast potential on-demand TV subscriber base, but it will have the financial clout to secure the rights to high-rating feature films, TV shows and sport.”
TalkTalk’s continued support for Tiscali’s on-demand TV service was borne out by the announcement that Tiscali has developed a new high-definition electronic program guide (EPG). This technology could also be employed in a forthcoming TV offering from TalkTalk.