Show Hide image

UK newspaper companies protest News Corp's BSkyB takeover

The owners of the Daily Telegraph, the Guardian, Associated Newspaper and Trinity Mirror have compla

Major UK newspaper companies have urged business secretary Vince Cable to intervene on Rupert Murdoch's bid to take full control of BSkyB.

The letter, written by the chiefs of the Telegraph Media Group (TMG), the Guardian Media Group (GMG), the Associated Newspapers and Trinity Mirror, asked Cable to block the takeover as it could affect media plurality in the UK.

The letter argued that after the takeover, the turnover of Murdoch's media empire would reach £7.5bn, which is much more than the BBC's £4.8bn.

The letter was also signed by Mark Thompson, director general of the BBC; Ian Livingston, chief executive of BT; and David Abraham, chief executive of Channel 4.

It was also backed by a memo prepared by the City law firm Slaughter & May, which provides legal arguments for Cable to intervene.

Cable's stance will be known after News Corp files for regulatory approval with the European Commission on competition grounds. News Corp currently owns 39 per cent stake in BSkyB and is bidding for the remaining 61 per cent stake.

However, Cable's decision has to be approved by David Cameron.