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Last Updated: Friday, 14 October 2005, 18:59 GMT 19:59 UK
BSkyB seeks 'war chest' for deals
James Murdoch, BSkyB chief executive
James Murdoch is looking to make acquisitions
Pay-TV operator BSkyB is to raise 1bn by issuing new bonds to investors, with some of the proceeds likely to be spent on funding acquisitions.

The company, led by James Murdoch, said the fund-raising exercise would also enable it to refinance its debt.

Media reports have suggested BSkyB may be interested in buying private British firm Video Networks, the owner of video-on-demand service HomeChoice.

BSkyB is keen to use broadband internet technology to deliver more content.

Asset building

The company said it planned to issue bonds to institutional investors in a private placement, closing later this month.

The proceeds would be used for "general corporate purposes", it said.

"The group may use the proceeds of the offering for acquisitions of businesses and assets in support of its strategy, including in relation to content, technology and distribution," the firm added.

BSkyB has almost 7.8 million digital satellite subscribers in the UK and hopes to reach the 10 million mark by the end of 2010.

BSkyB, in which Rupert Murdoch's News Corporation is the largest single shareholder, is thought to be keen to boost its content and widen its delivery platforms.

The company's shares closed up 11.50 pence, or 2.1%, at 535.50p.


SEE ALSO:
Sky+ boosts broadcaster's profits
03 Aug 05 |  Business
BSkyB launches rival to Freeview
21 Jun 04 |  Business


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