BSkyB investors seen attacking Murdoch

Satellite broadcaster BSkyB will report a slow start to its financial year at this week's annual meeting, when Rupert Murdoch will fend off accusations that he is not sufficiently independent to chair the company, according to a report from London's Daily Mail.

The report said analysts at investment bank UBS expected BSkyB to report that in the three months to the end of September, it had added 60,000 subscribers, compared with 58,000 in the same period last year, taking the total number to 7.84 million.

Friday's meeting would also see BSkyB report broadband subscriber figures after launching the service six weeks ago, with analysts expecting 25,000 customers, the report said.

Murdoch, whose News Corp. owns 39% of BSkyB, had been accused by the corporate governance body, Pensions Investment Research Consultants (PIRC), of failing to allow different views to be expressed, the report said.

PIRC wanted BSkyB shareholders to oppose his re-election as chairman, the report further said.