Sky had private equity ally for ITV

It has emerged BSkyB had a private equity partner lined up to take part in its £940 million (E1.36bn) raid on ITV late last year. At the last minute the private equity house pulled out so Sky had to decide whether to go ahead and buy all of the blocking stake to prevent Virgin's takeover bid.

The investor has not been named and its not known if the regulatory risk put them off. Last week the Competition Commission said in a preliminary report that the 17.9 per cent stake bought by Sky raised serious competition concerns as it gave the satellite broadcaster a potential stranglehold on ITV’s strategy.

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