Sky appeal over ITV shares allowed

Sky will be permitted to challenge a Competition Commission ruling requiring it to sell most of its 17.9% stake in ITV, the Court of Appeal has announced.

The December 2007 ruling, which was subsequently confirmed by business secretary John Hutton, required that Sky reduce its stake in ITV to below 7.5% because of a "a significant lessening of competition arising from a loss of rivalry in the all-TV market".

Sky bought its stake in ITV for 135p per share in November 2008. By the time that Hutton confirmed the Competition Commission decision, ITV's shares were worth 73p and Sky faced a loss of 250m. Today, ITV shares were trading at 21p each.