Tiscali Gets Eight First-Round Bids; Carphone In The Mix

Tiscali’s sale appears to have garnered interest from a gamut of first-round bidders. Vodafone (NYSE: VOD), BT (NYSE: BT), Carphone Warehouse, BSkyB (NYSE: BSY), Swisscom’s Fastweb and Wind all put in bids, FT.com says. CCI Insight analyst Stuart Collins (via MobileToday) ruminates that Carphone may get to release some cash from its $2.1 billion injection by Best Buy to plough in to an investment such as Tiscali. The Times suggests the creation of a new UK broadband number one from Carphone’s TalkTalk plus Tiscali, which last year itself bought Pipex, could hasten its spin-off from Carphone, allowing Best Buy to control the mobile retail operation. Given Best Buy’s investment is only in Carphone’s retail side and not in the broadband operation, the tectonics certainly appear to have shifted toward such a scenario. But, in BT, Voda and Fastweb, Carphone has challengers with significant financial clout. Tiscali meets Monday to discuss bids.