AA likely to bid for BT alarms business

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The Independent Online
THE Automobile Association has emerged as the most likely buyer for British Telecom's burglar alarms business, Telecom Security, writes Jeremy Warner.

BT has put the business up for sale as part of a disposal programme of peripheral interests.

Telecom Security already serves more than 40,000 homes and commercial premises. While it is a substantial business, in which BT has invested heavily over the past five years, it is thought to still be loss- making and is unlikely to attract a price of more than pounds 1m.

The AA claims to be the largest single insurance intermediary in Europe, with a fast- growing business in home and motor insurance. With insurers increasingly demanding home security against burglars as a condition for cover, the AA believes it is a natural business for expansion. Some insurers offer up to 10 per cent off premiums for households with a Telecom Security system.