Skype Founders Move to Block Sale

Skype’s founders asked a U.S. federal court to prevent Index Ventures and one of its partners from further participating in the proposed $1.9 billion acquisition of the Web phone service, according to a court filing on Wednesday.

The suit, brought by Joltid, the new company of Skype founders Niklas Zennstrom and Janus Friis, said Index and one of its partners Michelangelo Volpi were misappropriating confidential information in their bid to acquire a majority stake in Skype from eBay (NASDAQ: EBAY).

The request for the injunction is the latest in a legal battle that threatens to disrupt eBay’s sale of 65 percent of Skype, announced early last month. Along with Index Ventures, the expected buyers also include private equity firm Silver Lake and a venture firm run by Netscape co-founder Marc Andreessen.

They also underscore the acrimony between Skype’s founders and Volpi, a former high-flyer at Cisco Systems (NASDAQ: CSCO), whom they had known for years.

The case is Joost U.S. Inc, Joost N.V. and Joltid Ltd v Michelangelo Volpi and Index Ventures Management, U.S. District Court, District of Delaware, No. 09-CV-00708.

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