RealTime IT News

GTS Grabs U.K. ISP Netcom for $91.5 Million

Adding to its pan-European designs, U.S. and European broadband player Global TeleSystems Friday bought a major U.K. ISP in an all-stock deal valued at $91.5 million.

GTS (GTS) inked the deal to draw Netcom Internet Ltd. from Providence Equity Partners L.P. The company has significant infrastructure, including a Web hosting center in London boasting 3,600 customers, and a roster of blue-chip clientel which includes Virgin, Siemens and Cap Gemini.

H. Brian Thompson, GTS' chairman and chief executive officer, said GTS will shift Netcom's European and trans-Atlantic traffic to its Ebone network. GTS will also introduce new broadband applications to Netcom's customer base.

Netcom's services include server co-location, e-commerce and security products, IP VPN, B2B exchanges and data back-up. Rod Attwooll, Netcom's managing director, said that the deal will bring in an "essential" European network and will also carry in "an exciting new growth phase for Netcom."

GTS Friday also announced the expansion of its European fiber network to Bilbao, Spain.

The company last week introduced dedicated Internet access in 10 European countries. Its Internet access service is available in the United Kingdom, France, Germany, Belgium, Ukraine, Russia, Czech Republic, Slovakia, Poland and Hungary. GTS plans to extend their service offering to seven other countries by the end of this year, including the Netherlands, Sweden, Ireland, Norway, Spain, Italy and Denmark.

GTS also recently inked an alliance with fellow European broadband player chello broadband, the terms of which required GTS to create more points of presence in Europe. In November, it formed an alliance with Critical Path for messaging services in the region.