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By | Kelly Fiveash 16th October 2007 14:48

BSkyB sues EDS for £709m

Gunning for damages over 'woeful' performance

Media giant BSkyB is suing US IT outsourcing firm EDS for £709m in a High Court case that kicked off in London yesterday.

The broadcaster alleges that EDS failed to fulfil obligations of a £48m contract for a customer service system that was first agreed in 2000.

BSkyB's barrister in the case said the firm's subsequent performance was "woeful", according to today's Financial Times.

The media behemoth ended its contract with EDS in March 2002 and began legal action against the Texas-based firm in August 2004.

The huge damages claim – said to be one of the largest British commercial cases of its kind – alleges deceit, negligent misrepresentation, and breach of contract by EDS.

BSkyB said in a statement to The Register: "This trial is happening because EDS made fraudulent representations to secure a contract from BSkyB and failed to deliver its contractual obligations.

"We ended the relationship five years ago and went on to successfully complete the project to upgrade our customer management systems. It would be inappropriate to comment further while the trial is continuing."

EDS, which last month confirmed that it had offered a quarter of its US staff early retirement as it looked to move more of its operations to cheaper territories, said it "will vigorously defend its position" against BSkyB's costly allegations.

The trial is expected to run until May 2008. ®

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