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Eurobites: BT's Soccer Supremo Leaves the Field

Also in today's EMEA regional report: German firms plan to make online purchasing safer and more secure; new boss for Telenor's Bangladesh unit; "near real time" web surveillance proposed in UK.

  • Delia Bushell, who as managing director of BT Sport & BT TV was instrumental in launching the UK incumbent telco as a serious rival to Sky in the pay-TV sports content market, is to step down next month after three years with the company. Bushell, who spent 14 years at Sky before jumping ship to BT Group plc (NYSE: BT; London: BTA), oversaw the £1.2 billion (US$1.5 billion) renewal of BT's UEFA Champions and Europa League soccer-screening rights, as well as the introduction of an enhanced BT TV YouView service. She will announce her long-term plans in the coming weeks. (See BT Splashes $1.5B to Beat Sky in Latest Soccer Rights Battle.)

  • A group of German finance, auto and tech firms -- Daimler and former Nokia unit HERE among them -- are discussing the creation of a separate company to make online purchasing more secure, Reuters reports. According to the report, the initiative is similar to one championed by Facebook in the US, allowing users to use a digital "master key" when making online transactions, instead of entering their financial details each time.

  • Norway-based Telenor Group (Nasdaq: TELN) has appointed Michael Foley as CEO of its Bangladesh subsidiary, Grameenphone . Currently serving as CEO of Telenor's Bulgarian unit, Foley has 30 years' experience spanning the telecom, retail and gaming sectors. He replaces Petter-B. Furberg, who has been appointed chairman of the Grameenphone board of directors. Grameenphone is the largest mobile operator in Bangladesh, claiming 59 million connections.

  • A draft technical paper is proposing the "near real time" surveillance of UK web users' Internet-based communications, according to a BBC report. If the proposal became law it would form part of the Investigatory Powers Act, which has already proved controversial, falling foul of the European Court of Justice at the end of last year. (See Eurobites: Is Huawei About to Buy a Security Vendor?)

  • Facebook has started deleting tens of thousands of UK-based accounts it has deemed "fake news," the Daily Telegraph reports, in the wake of the hoo-ha over what was seen as the widespread peddling of Trump-esque "alternative facts" via the social network. Here at Eurobites Towers, we prefer to eschew the term "fake news" and call this stuff out for what it really is: plain old cobblers.

    — Paul Rainford, Assistant Editor, Europe, Light Reading

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