back to article Tiscali shares suspended on titsup fears

Shares in Tiscali have been suspended on the Italian stock exchange after tumbling almost 50 per cent this morning on news it failed to meet a debt repayment. The group - whose UK ISP brands include Tiscali, Pipex, Freedom2Surf and Nildram - said over the weekend it would try to renegotiate its loan agreements. Tiscali owes …


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  1. floweracre
    Thumb Down


    Will this explain why the 8mb link we pay for, runs at about 5mb in the day and 300kb in the evening? Are the bank throttling them?

  2. Nick Woodruffe
    Thumb Up

    At last!

    It couldn't happen to a more deserving company.

    Pity the poor persons who have Tiscali accounts, but what about all those companies who have their business lines through them? Vanco (now Global Reliance Com) used Tiscali when they sold bandwidth to UK businesses.

  3. Anonymous Coward
    Thumb Up

    Couldn't happen to a nicer company.

    Once had Tiscali as an ISP, biggest mistake I ever made. I was without connection for nearly a month before they eventually let me go to another supplier because they were unable to fix the problem at the exchange.

    Thumbs up to them going down the pan, not to the company themselves...

  4. Anonymous Coward

    No wonder why

    Tiscali are shit - easily the worst ISP in the business (although BT and Vermin Media are close). They deserve to die to be honest.

  5. richard tanswell
    Thumb Up

    Good riddance!

    I was with Tiscali once, absolute nightmare!! Service was never great and if you ever wanted to move away from them, boy they make it hard!! Also don't ever try and call them if you need any help or have a query....they never answer and are useless!!

    It's sad however that they will take Nildram and Pipex with them. Nildram were a very good company until the takeover...a nice small-ish ISP with good service and customer service. I guess this is what happens when a large ISP offers lots of money to takeover a small ISP!

  6. Danny


    BURN TISCALI BURN..... Its true what they say... What goes around comes around!!!

  7. Alex Walsh

    I for one will not lose sleep over this

    My very first (non university) email address was a address- one of the first UK companies Tiscali got their claws into. I shall never forgive them for dropping the newsreader supported forums in favour of a web based set up.

  8. Pete Silver badge

    @Nick Woodruffe

    ... what about all those companies ...

    Hopefully any company that really, really needs the internet to run it's business (rather than merely as a toy for it's employees) will have both redundant and diverse[1] feeds. If they don't have these already then they'd better have a really fast plan in place to get them,

    Of course those companies that only have internet connectivity for their employees to goof around on could see a massive rise in productivity if their ISP goes bust! Clouds? silver linings?

    [1] i.e. connections entering their business from more than one physical location, so someone with a JCB can't dig up both their feeds at the same time.

  9. Anonymous Coward


    Think of all those poor redundant call centre workers in India who might be out of a job.

  10. g e


    Shame if these guys go. I've had almost 100% trouble free internet from them for several years. The thought of having to move to another (shit) ISP is horrible, just cos Tiscali are arse.

  11. Jax
    Thumb Up


    they were the worst ISP ever imo.

  12. william henderson

    and so to me

    i have been with tiscali for years and have no reason to criticise the service i have recieved.

  13. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    My Nildram ADSL line went down last night

    I wonder if that is the reason why my Nildram ADSL line went down last night and was still down when I went to work this morning. Can I get a MAC code please.

  14. Juan Inamillion


    Years ago I used to recommend Pipex and Nildram all the time, great little companies. Then Shitscali came along and the service levels went down quicker than a twenty dollar whore. And as for trying to escape it's clutches, what a nightmare. I've moved nearly everyone off them now, thank goodness.

    Nasty nasty nasty company.

  15. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    fnar fnar

    I can't help but grin from ear to ear at this news. However, given that it was such a screamingly blatant scam outfit, my only worry is that the original ringleaders may have long since done a runner, leaving a bunch of hapless fall-guys to suck on its inevitable demise.

  16. Anonymous Coward
    Thumb Down

    Reap what you sow

    I have been a long-time Pipex customer - from the early days of DSL. Great service, customer help on the VERY rare times i had occasion to call was superb. I was even a shareholder so did well out of them. Then along came Tricksally - abysmal service, numerous drop-outs (line and staff), price hike and a usage cap that is crap> billing service was abysmal for several months. Good riddance I say, now where's me coat - I think i left it here with a slip of paper with my MAC code in the pocket

  17. Mark Mitchell


    ......will have both redundant and diverse[1] feeds....

    Wow thanks for the explanation - you must be a manager.

  18. neil
    Thumb Up

    Not Surprising

    If the way they run their service is anything like their corporate activity.

    Had them when I first went ADSL, I stayed 5 weeks, got told not to download more than 50mb in an evening, had sub dial up speeds. Went to f2s, left when it was announced they bought Pipex. Had my phone with them, they forgot to charge me for 10 months, admitted it was their fault so I got 10 months free calls, which was nice.

  19. b166er

    Juan Inten

    Pipex ROFL. The biggest bunch of cowboys this side of the atlantic.

    I had the CEO once personally promise to call me back in 10 minutes, never did.

    Shame Freedom2Surf and Nildram sold-out, perhaps their original owners will get them back for a knock-down price, though it's probably too late; image tarnished.

    Go for an EntaNet reseller (if you don't mind peak being 8am-12am with generous peak usage tariffs available (unlimited off-peak)) or Zen if you've got the cash.

  20. Anonymous Coward
    Thumb Up

    abandon ship

    This is one company that totally deserves to go under.

    Without a doubt tiscali and it's recent acquisitions are some of the worst I have ever had the misfortune of dealing with. Wasn't always the case - nildram and even pipex were ok before tiscali got hold.

    If you are a customer leave now - there are far better options.

  21. Dabooka

    In their defence...

    I've not had any bother with them at all. Obviously a load have people have, but I can't complain. Better experience with them than Talk Talk and BT. And AOL obviously.

  22. John P

    I'm surprised

    by all the negativity towards Tiscali. I have been with them for a couple of years now and have never had a single problem. My 8mb line is always up and running at 7mb, which is fine with me. No one ever gets the advertised speed of broadband lines, not unless they live in the exchange.

    Billing has always been spot on, and when I recently added Homechoice and phone to my package, I did it all online and it was all installed within a week and working perfectly. The installer even offered to tack the wire to my skirting boards, which I didn't take him up on as I haven't entirely decided where to put the router yet.

    I really hope they don't go down the drain, as I am quite enjoying only having to pay £2 extra a month for TV and Phone, saving me £11 that I don't have to pay to BT, and another £20 I don't have to pay to Sky.

    Judging from the comments on here, looks like I am the exception rather than the rule! (story of my life)

    Mine's the one with the Tiscali bill in one pocket and the £29 pound I am now saving every month in the other

  23. Aristotles slow and dimwitted horse


    With another "major" ISP going the way of the Dodo, is this news also another nail in the Phorm coffin?


  24. Oliver

    Ciao Bruto!


  25. Dafydd Lawrence


    Do you have a guide how to get a feed from two different exchanges to your business using ADSL?

    I'd love to hear it - it took us 18 months at one of our sites to get BT to agree to this and even then it involved us laying the trenches and conduits for them.

  26. Craig Chambers
    Thumb Down

    Aargh - don't want to lose my email addresses

    I've had two 'dial-up' accounts with Lineone, now Tiscali, that date back to me using them for dial-up on my Dreamcast and Psion Series 5 (Lineone had a virtual ISP called that Psion recommended) back in the late 90's. It'd cause me some disruption to lose the POP email addresses associated with these accounts. There has seldom been any problem on these email accounts in 11 years, so I can't really complain about Tiscali.

    I suppose that I should use this as a warning and switch email accounts for me and the wife around now as these addresses were never guaranteed, and I pay precisely sod all for them as I've had DSL with Zen for 7 years.

  27. The Dorset Rambler


    I was with Toucan with excellent download speeds. Now have been sold to Pipex and download speeds have halved.

    Time to go methinks...

  28. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    2 Exchanges to one site shouldn't be done

    The danger to the BT network is quite high, IE lightning down the power cables at your site jumps over the phone system and pass's down to 2 exchanges killing them both off(unlikely i know being an ex CSE) but still it could happen and they must charge a pretty penny for it to be honest...

    The other way is microwave link or fibre.

  29. Jamie


    I was with Pipex but got rid of them as I was having major issues with my connection, dropping off on a regular basis.

    Real glad I moved on, could see where they were headed 3 years ago when I dropped them, their customer service went from good to complete shite in a matter of months.

  30. Ed
    Thumb Down

    I've left

    I finally left Nildram a couple of months ago after being with them since they were good (i.e. pre-Pipex), and I'm with Be now. They're so much better it's unbelievable... Good online control panel that lets you choose speed vs reliability, fast (16Mbit - really, most of the time), a good IRC channel and forum for support, good phone support and best of all, cheaper.

    Can't really think why I stuck it out with Nildram for so long...

    Of course, Be could easily go down hill, but I'm enjoying it right now...

  31. Pete

    DON'T GO!

    Well the good news is existing Tiscali users aren't going to end up with a worse provider in the shape of Sky.

    The bad news is I was just in the middle of migrating to Tiscali.

    Do the boys at Google fancy being an ISP

  32. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    Always had a great service and connection from Tiscali, and the free international landline calls 24/7 suits me (and my Australian girlfriend) just fine.

    It makes me wonder how many people have got bad service compared to ones that get good service from them.. I've heard some real horror stories about them.

  33. Anonymous Coward

    Too bad for Nildram customers...

    Myself included. Been with Nildram for donkey's years (5+) and never had a single problem - and no outages that were their fault (rather BT). And they've never tried capping my transfer either, or doing funky things with BitTorrent traffic, etc.

    Let's hope they get bought up by someone else. Quite happy for Tiscali to go down the pan - used to be with them for dial-up and they were rubbish. Just hope they don't take Nildram down with them...

    Not least because I don't want to have to teach my folks to use a new email address...

  34. Steven Jones

    @Will Morrow

    Good heavens - what nonsense. A single lightening strike will just happen to kill two exchanges by hitting one customer site? Well, if lightening strikes at customer sites were causing so much trouble, then it would be happening all over the place. As it is, quite apart from the basic phsyics problem of getting very high current flows down several km of thin copper, the termination at the exchange is quite well protected, and any surge that did happen would be limited to the affected line cards.

    The real reason that single properties will not generally be connected to two different exchanges will simply be one of cost and configurations. Telephone networks have historically grown out from exchanges, and the ducting, copper loop, and configuration systems will be laid out that way. Also, systems and support arrangements are likely to be organised along geographical lines.

    Should you have sufficient money, then any telecoms provider is going to be happy enough to provide diversely routed communications connections, but it will be expensive. Generally a gaim for the big boys. Very large data centres, large call centres and so on might have this - not medium sized companies.

  35. wildmonkeyuk


    Anyone who uses Tiscali needs their head reading anyway in a professional capacity.

    Paris - Well even she has enough brain-cells to steer clear of tiscali as an ISP.

  36. David Edwards


    Provided you can get it a 3G card in your server an a limit to services that use it (SMTP collector on limited attachment size) is a reasonable contingency plan for a micro business. Many people would find it hard to get dual redundant lines int their office (PS JCB is a trademark although in the dictionary as a digger see PSION and net book issue, other types of mechanical digger should also be considered)

  37. Carl Thomas
    Thumb Up


    I am deeply moved by this. Who would have thought a crap ISP whose sole selling point is that they are really cheap would have run into trouble considering how tight the average UK broadband punter is with their cash?

    Another pile crap high, sell crap cheap ISP, the biggest of the lot could be going, fantastic.

    Sorry to all those people who might find themselves having to pay more for broadband internet and telephone than 4 pints in a London local now.

  38. Anonymous Coward
    Paris Hilton

    RE: Hmmm By wildmonkeyuk

    "Paris - Well even she has enough brain-cells to steer clear of tiscali as an ISP."

    Quite, but do you have the brain cells to come up with an incredibly witty and funny Paris Hilton remark and complete the caper by remembering to actually select the icon before submitting?

    You, sir, are Milhouse.

  39. Anonymous Coward
    Thumb Up

    Jolly Good

    Like many here, I was with LineOne in the DialUp days, Tiscali bought them and killed them.

    I was with Pipex BB, no complaints, I even took out a second 12 month contract to get my monthy fee reduced by £5, then Tiscali came along and slashed my 8Mb speed to 300k.

    At least now I'll be able to waltz away from my 'contract'.

  40. Chris Miller


    Another very satisfied long-term customer here. I haven't detected any degradation in service and the help desk (last time I needed them, which was last year due to a BT problem) are still the same charming, intelligent, helpful folks in Aylesbury.

    I wonder if Adrian Mardlin (yes really) would be interested in buying them back?

  41. Dave Bell

    So what how?

    At least I have a mobile phone.

    OK, BT still provide the physical line, but what do I do it Tiscali collapse? I get a good dealon Interent and phone calls.

    I don't depend on a Tiscali email address. but getting at my email will be tricky.

    I suppose Ofcom will be in chocolate teapot mode.

  42. Anonymous Coward

    I work for openreach...

    ,,, so contractually can't recommend BT Broadband!

  43. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    @ Dafydd Lawrence

    Duh - landline to your local BT exchange and microwave to another carrier's site.

    I know the UK is behind the times in many ways, but if we can manage this here in NZ without difficulty then surely at least some primitive form redundancy and diversity is achieveable over there.

  44. Ian

    I'm glad to see there are a few...

    .. people who, like me have had an absolutely flawless service from them. My 8Mbit connection actually is 8Mbit, and regularly achieves the appropriate real life download speeds, even in the evening. It seems reliable too...

    To the person who reckons I should get my head looked at, I suggest that, like all ISPs / exchanges / phonelines / usage, there are good stories and bad stories. I chose Tiscali because I passionately hate BT, as every interaction with them is painful, expensive and drawn out.

    Broadband and phone for £15 - BT charge you £10 a month (soon to be £11 I note) just for the phone. Reckon I've saved at least a fiver a month (more like a tenner for an unlimited connection) for the last 2 years...

  45. Nick Palmer

    Another Nildram user

    We've been using Nildram to provide ADSL to our remote sites for years now, and while it's true that there was a bit of decline after Tiscali took over, more recently they've been great, very reliable and easy to talk to. Fingers crossed they get bought by a decent outfit.

  46. Rob
    Thumb Up

    Nildram used to be awesome

    Since they were bought by tiscali my regular 2.5MB+ connection has dropped to 800kbps on a regular basis. No one seems to know why or care so I'm hoping they go under. If they do i'll be forced to get off my lazy arse and find a new provider...

  47. Neil
    Thumb Down

    Goodbye Tiscali.... We'll miss you.... NOT !

    Jumped ship from Tiscali to PLUSNET Pro package just before christmas, alleluya, what a difference a decent ISP makes. I was getting around 2.5meg download maximum and less during peak times, now I get a rock solid 4.5meg download and I'm over 2 mines from the exchange.

    All those who are happy with Tiscali, you're fooling yourselves, jump, and jump NOW !

  48. Anonymous Coward


    Anyone see The Gadget Show yesterday? They gave a very favourable recommendation regarding Tiscali's phone and broadband package. Red faces all round there then me thinks, don't these people do any sort of research other than listen to the corporate drivel that they spout. Trouble is a lot of people will be under the impression that the presenters actually know wtf they are talking about.

  49. seasider
    Thumb Down

    Shortage of idiots?

    Difficult to feel any sympathy for the corporate entity - I used to have F2s as an ISP - it was bought by Pipex and started to fall apart - but it was striking just how fast the service went downhill once Tiscali got involved. I bailed out as Tiscali bought Pipex. I guess as Wall Street found out the world is beginning to run out of idiots to buy crap products.

  50. Darren Rogers

    Need help ? Want a decent ISP ?

    I've been recommending KeConnect to my customers for years and they are superb. Constantly No.1 on for speed, reliability and customer service.

    They do packages from £9.99/m but most of my customers go for the £19.99/m package. If you want something dirt cheap, then look elsewhere and give them a miss, but if you want to avoid another Tiscali then they're the one in my upinion.

    You can migrate fast and free to them once you've got a MAC from Tiscali. Enter it here: and you'll be with a company who won't let you down and will give you the best customer service you've ever experienced.

  51. Anonymous Coward
    Thumb Down

    @ Darren Rogers

    KeConnect are extremely overpriced for the service they offer imo

    While the thinkbroadband comparison you comment on is very misleading as they have only an average of 43 ratings while the majority have many hundreds or thousands. You must be a major share holder or an employee to recommend such a vastly over priced service, up to 8Mbs 10 GB usage allowance and charged @ £2.18 for every 1GB over the Fup is extortionate.

  52. mark jacobs


    "Wall Street found out the world is beginning to run out of idiots to buy crap products."

    Oh God! Let's hope so! I, like many here, have seen the service go down the pan as soon as 'Tiscrappy took over. I had an F2S broadband account and it started off great, but when taken over, the service went rapidly downhill. Our business had a Nildram account which was brilliant until they were taken over, and their service went "crappy". 'Tis-certainly-crappy.

  53. Dan
    Paris Hilton

    @I work for openreach...

    I'm a distributor and customer with the Utility Warehouse discount club, I can recommend them and generally do on a regular basis (kinda the whole point of the distributor thing really). 'course, I don't s'pose El Reg likes people spamming the comments section with affiliate links and things, so I will resist the urge :-(

    Paris, 'cos she could do with resisting the occasional urge.

  54. Dan

    two can play...

    Despite my best intentions to resist marketing urges, I see Mr Rogers' affiliate link made it through moderation and have therefore decided to abandon all urge resistance forthwith. Therefore -

    If you're with tiscali (or any other ISP) and you'd like to have an internet connection with a company that prides itself on customer service (94% of respondents in a recent customer survey say they'd be glad to recommend the service to others, excellent reports in a consumer magazine that i'm not allowed to name (bah!), UK call centre that answered 90% of support calls last year within 15 seconds) then you could do worse than checking out

    oh, you can get 5% off your shopping in bunch of high street stores as well.

    /end marketting blurb.

    sorry, had to get it out of my system :-)

    mine's the one with the 'utility warehouse authorised distributor' logo.

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