Rumor Mill:Banks encourage Vonage to sell

According to a report in the Financial Times, UBS and Deutsche Bank are encouraging Vonage to consider a sale as a parallel process to its planned initial public offering of stock. Vonage chose the banks to underwrite its stock market listing. The company plans to raise $600 million through its IPO. Analysts estimate that Vonage could sell for between $1 billion and $1.5 billion. The VoIP startup did not comment on the rumored sale.

The parallel process could be an indication that the banks are worried that Vonage's numbers cannot sustain long-term market value. However, eBay's recent buyout of Skype has some insiders saying the market is riper for VoIP acquisitions than for IPOs. Wall Street bankers have suggested that Verizon, Time Warner, or Comcast would make great buyers for Vonage.

For more on the rumored Vonage sale:
- see this article in the Financial Times