back to article UK government extends review of BT stake owned by French tycoon Patrick Drahi

The UK government has extended its national security assessment into the increasing ownership of BT shares by French telco tycoon Patrick Drahi, and has reportedly requested more information regarding the acquisition. Announced in May, the investigation on Drahi's investment in the telecoms giant was sparked by the purchase of …

  1. Andy The Hat Silver badge

    What's the issue?

    French tycoon owns BT ... and Openreach ... and most of the basic infrastructure ... and charges third parties what he likes for access to that infrastructure. Extracting wads of wonga until a company is bled dry then moving on is the way of "allowing the market to proliferate" in our form of capitalist society.

    And no, "What's the issue?" was not a serious statement ...

    1. elsergiovolador Silver badge

      Re: What's the issue?

      It's not capitalist at all. More like late stage capitalism, which like an electric chair to a chair. Looks similar, but has a different purpose.

      The problem is that shareholders can only get dividends out of profit and to make profit you have to sacrifice salaries or re-investment. So in reality it is a fight between workers who grow company and shareholders how put initial capital and want infinite return. These two things are incompatible.

      I think that aspect of economy has to be changed because it is not working. Shareholders should be converted to lenders, so that they can only get back what they put in + interest. This will remove pressure from shareholders to chase profit at all cost.

      There is a common misconception that if company has not profit then it's doing bad. No, if it is able to re-invest and pay its running costs, then ideally it should have no profit.

  2. This post has been deleted by its author

  3. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    We need to change type of Share ownership

    We need to take a look at how Swiss company share holding works?

    Two types of shares, you cannot own one type if you're not a Swiss national.

    Allow foreign share ownership of Critical National Infrastructure, like Power grid, utility company's, Train and Bus companies all pimping off the taxpayer.

    Then "Offshore" everything to multinational companies using cheap labour abroad (Modern day slavery).

    We have "Pimped" ourselves out to every Tom, Dick and Herbert, we left EU with a plan to retain our Sovereignty.

    All we have done is gone around in circles with Gov, Gov Depts, Local Auth that are not fit for purpose.

    I should know, I have worked for the majority of them,

    "Fart in a trance" with managers managing managers with lots of Micro Management to the Chuckle Brothers Methodology.

  4. VoiceOfTruth

    Chair polishers

    -> the government had 30 working days

    -> can be extended by up to a further 45 working days

    -> the government had requested more information about the BT deal

    It probably took the civil service 30 days to get round to writing a letter.

    National Security. Hmmm. Our water and power supplies are owned by the Germans and the French. Not a word was uttered.

    1. John Brown (no body) Silver badge

      Re: Chair polishers

      True. But we were in the EU then and the relevant Act didn't exist.

  5. Mike 137 Silver badge

    On the other hand ...

    A takeover might even improve service levels (particularly that of Openretch).

  6. drankinatty

    Beware - Look no rurther than Suddenlink in the US -- Poor BT Customers...

    After suffering for 7 years after Drahi (through Altice) bought a controlling stake in Suddenlink Internet in the US, and watching what had been an honest, customer service oriented company be turned into a company that slashes services, inflates charges, nickles and dimes at every turn and triples costs for services it holds a near monopoly on -- things look bad for BT. His M.O. is certain. Gut services, disable customer support and increase prices. It got so bad, and the Suddenlink name run so far into the mud, it is changing it's name to Optimum (kinda like a Facebook/Meta play). I feel sorry for BT.

    1. J. R. Hartley

      Re: Beware - Look no rurther than Suddenlink in the US -- Poor BT Customers...

      Jesus that's grim.

      At least he made himself a few million, that's all that matters.


    2. Alan Brown Silver badge

      Re: Beware - Look no rurther than Suddenlink in the US -- Poor BT Customers...

      In this instance he'd end up essentially OWNING access to 90% of UK landline connections

      Remember that mid 2000s New Zealand Ministry of Commerce paper which quantified BT/Openreach market abuse and rejected proposals to copy it Down Under in favour of a fully cleaved pair of companies and legislation ensuring the lines company (and lines!) can't be captured by a large player?

      The same pensions claims were raised in that case too. It turned out the majority of them fall against the lines company and that's been a rip-roaring sucess story once the dead hand of vertical monopolisation was removed from the controls

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