U.S. cable big might spoil BT’s fibre celebration

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LONDON, Oct 4 (Reuters Breakingviews) – BT’s (BT.L) hopes for UK broadband domination might face critical U.S. competitors. The telecommunications operator’s shares fell 7% on Monday after the Sunday Telegraph reported that pay-TV operator Sky, owned by $263 billion Comcast (CMCSA.O), desires to spend money on Virgin Media O2, the closest rival to BT’s Openreach community learn extra .

Even if a deal occurs, Sky would stay an enormous Openreach buyer. BT’s fibre community, which ought to stretch to 25 million of Britain’s 30 million houses by round 2027, is just too huge to disregard. More worrying for BT Chief Executive Philip Jansen is the necessity to generate an honest return on the 15 billion kilos he’s going to spend digging up Britain’s roads. Liberty Global-backed (LBTYA.O) Virgin desires to have 14 million houses on ultra-fast broadband by 2028. With help from a large like Comcast, that concentrate on might get greater and arrive quicker. (By Ed Cropley)

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Editing by Peter Thal Larsen and Oliver Taslic

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People walk past the BT headquarters in London, Britain, November 15, 2019. REUTERS/Simon Dawson