X-BV98 – At a press conference held amidst tight security at the Intaki Bank head offices in Syndicate today, representatives of the Upwell Consortium, InterBus and the Impetus corporation announced the signing of comprehensive contracts for transportation and communications technology and services to be provided as part of the Upwell Consortium's Citadel product line. While the deal with Impetus comes as little surprise given that the Gallente entertainment and communications concern is known to have been in negotiations with Upwell, the involvement of InterBus has provoked some comment among observers of the interstellar economy.
"The Impetus deal is non-controversial in market terms, although it's possible Federation politicians will have something to say given the connection with the Syndicate and ORE," says Ottilia Casault, the Scope Business Network's senior editor. "However, the InterBus deal has the potential to raise serious questions from InterBus's competitors and at the highest political levels. This is because of InterBus's quasi-governmental status and large presence in the marketplace. I would anticipate some very hard questions being asked about this deal."
While agreeing with this broad analysis, other commentators point out that the agreement makes great financial and practical sense for both Upwell and InterBus. Iesa Murikomo, host of popular Caldari news show This Is The State, said, "You have to analyze this from the point of view of the partners in the deal. InterBus still has a major share of the interstellar transportation market but is even today recovering from its customs offices debacle. Upwell gains access to what remains the most developed and comprehensive personal and contract freight transportation network in New Eden. The mutual benefits are clear and, while private competitors and empire politicians might grumble about it, I don't believe the SCC are at all likely to step in here."
With these developments, despite signs of some concerns at the rapid growth and questionable actions of the conglomerate, the Upwell Consortium seems set to continue on its path for the foreseeable future.