Speakeasy Bought By….Best Buy?

Speakeasy Bought By….Best Buy?
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Category: Internet Access

$97 million shocker of a deal

Article by: Karl Bode

Speakeasy this morning has announced that the broadband provider has been acquired by electronics retail giant Best Buy for $97 million. Founded in 1994, Speakeasy started in Seattle as an Internet cafe. They made a name for themselves as a national customer-focused and community-friendly broadband provider. Gamers in particular flocked to their service in the late nineties. The company has long had a consistent and helpful presence in our forums.

“Best Buy, like Speakeasy, is known for its high level of customer service,” insists Speakeasy CEO Bruce Chatterley in an e-mail to customers. Just so we’re straight, this is the same Best Buy recently busted for operating a secret internal Best Buy website used to scam customers out of advertised deals? The same Best Buy that operates the much hated (at least among those who know the difference between SATA and ATA) Geek Squad?

Best Buy is insisting that nothing will change — though given the philosophical chasm between the two companies we find it hard to believe. “We have a high regard for Speakeasy’s employees, their culture, and their valued relationships with customers and vendors,” says Best Buy CFO Darren Jackson. “They have a strong customer service-oriented approach, which is an excellent fit with Best Buy’s culture and direction.”

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