Europe South Asia Asia Pacific Americas Middle East Africa BBC Homepage World Service Education

Front Page



UK Politics







Talking Point
On Air
Low Graphics

Thursday, December 17, 1998 Published at 15:19 GMT

Business: The Company File

Granada and Pearson sell BSkyB stake

BSkyB is in head to head competition with Granada

Media groups Granada and Pearson have off-loaded a 1% stake in BSkyB, Rupert Murdoch's satellite broadcaster.

The holding dates back to when BSkyB took over the then rival satellite broadcaster BSB, leaving the latter's backers with a holding in BSkyB which is progressively being sold.

[ image: Granada is gradually selling its BSkyB stake]
Granada is gradually selling its BSkyB stake
Granada's chairman Gerry Robinson indicated that he was looking to sell his group's stake in BSkyB when the media group reported its results last month.

Granada is a direct competitor of BSkyB in the battle to win digital television customers. Sky Digital was introduced this autumn and Granada has recently launched a digital television service, ONdigital, with fellow ITV group Carlton.

BSkyB originally teamed up with the ITV companies to create a digital television service, but the UK competition authorities were concerned that consumers would not benefit from the deal and kicked the satellite group out of the consortium.

Large sale

Granada and Pearson sold the stake to Goldman Sachs Equity Securities for £81.9m through their holding company BSB.

BSB said it wanted to make full use of its existing surplus advance corporation tax, ahead of changes to the system next year.

The move reduces BSB's stake in BSkyB to 11.8% or 203.6m shares.

BSB, which also a third owned by Pathe, was set up more than 10 years ago.

It had always been expected that the company would reduce its holding in BSkyB over time.

The move follows the sale by Granada two months ago of a 6.6% stake in BSkyB for £429m.

Advanced options | Search tips

Back to top | BBC News Home | BBC Homepage | ©

The Company File Contents

Relevant Stories

29 Nov 98 | The Company File
Retailers take on the taxman

25 Nov 98 | The Company File
Granada bucks the economic trend

13 Nov 98 | The Company File
Switching on to a TV revolution

01 Oct 98 | The Economy
Forte opts out of 48-hour week

Internet Links

Granada Group


The BBC is not responsible for the content of external internet sites.

In this section

Microsoft trial mediator welcomed

Vodafone takeover battle heats up

Christmas turkey strike vote

NatWest bid timetable frozen

France faces EU action over electricity

Pace enters US cable heartland

Mannesmann fights back

Storehouse splits up Mothercare and Bhs

The rapid rise of Vodafone

The hidden shopping bills

Europe's top net stock

Safeway faces cash demand probe

Mitchell intervenes to help shipyard

New factory creates 500 jobs

Drugs company announces 300 jobs

BT speeds internet access

ICL creates 1,000 UK jobs

National Power splits in two

NTT to slash workforce

Scoot links up with Vivendi

New freedom for Post Office

Insolvent firms to get breathing space

Airtours profits jump 12%

Freeserve shares surge

LVMH buys UK auction house

Rover - a car firm's troubles