Tiscali has appointed board member Mario Rosso its new CEO after the resignation of Tommaso Pompei yesterday – and it looks like his main task will be to steer the ISP and IPTV operator to an exit through acquisition. The company said it would “explore options to create value for shareholders connected with the process of consolidation taking place in the European telecommunications sector” – in other words, it’s looking for a merger partner or suitor (via Thomson). Nevertheless, it seems Rosso is charged with implementing the four-year business plan Pompei had drawn up.
None of this will come as a shock to Pompei, who last month anticipated a sell-off within the next couple of years. Tiscali bought Pipex for £210 million last year and is mid-way through rolling out its IPTV network nationwide – a difficult task for the operation, which is based on the London-centric Home Choice video service it bought for £50 million in 2006. Recent reports have fingered Deutsche Telekom (NYSE: DT), Swisscom, Wind and a host of others as potential bidders. Tiscali reported 2007 revenue up 34 percent to 910 million euros (£689 million).