Former telecoms monopoly BT Group (LON:BT.A) has been in talks to about investing in BritBox, the subscription service set to be launched by ITV (LON:ITV) and the BBC, The Telegraph reports. The news comes after it recently emerged that negotiations between ITV and the BBC had grown tense, with commercial network ITV committing more fully to their jointly-developed subscription service than the publicly funded BBC.
BT’s share price surged in the previous session, gaining 2.98 percent to close at 207.20p, outperforming the broader UK market rally which saw the blue-chip FTSE 100 index add 72.09 points to end trading 0.99 percent higher at 7,331.94. The group’s shares have added a little more than one percent to their value over the past year, as compared with about a 4.6-percent fall in the Footsie.
BT in talks to join Britbox
The Telegraph reported over the weekend that BT was exploring a multimillion-pound investment in Britbox, set to be launched by ITV and the BBC. The former telecoms monopoly has reportedly been in preliminary discussions with its FTSE 100 peer about becoming a shareholder in Britbox and helping to fund exclusive homegrown dramas to run on the forthcoming service.
Sources, however, told the newspaper that the talks were at an early stage and might not lead to an investment, with differences over the valuation of the venture viewed as a risk. BT, ITV and the BBC meanwhile are already partners in YouView, the set-top box system on which BT TV is based.
Analysts on FTSE 100 group
Analysts at Credit Suisse lifted their stance on the former telecoms monopoly to ‘outperform’ last week, hiking its target on the BT share price from 270p to 280p. According to MarketBeat, the blue-chip group currently has a consensus ‘buy’ rating, and an average valuation of 271.83p.