THE attempted rescue of a British entrepreneur who died on holiday in the Swiss Alps was played out on the messaging website Twitter.

Regular updates from the resort of Verbier were posted by friends of Rob Williams, 29, who died after reportedly becoming lost in a forest with friend and business partner Jason Tavaria, also 29.

The operation to save the pair was relayed over the website, with the discovery of Mr Williams’ body also reported.

The pair were joint-owners of Dolphin Music, formerly Woods', on Market Street, Huddersfield.

He was on holiday in a group which included Michelle Dewberry, the winner of the second series of TV show The Apprentice.

Mr Williams and Mr Tavaria got into difficulty after becoming separated from fellow snowboarders in the upmarket resort.

Mr Tavaria, an Irish national, was found after Dewberry launched an online rescue on Twitter when she wrote: "2 of our ski party been missing since 4pm. Conditions terrible. 1 guy found but trapped. 20 man team searching for other."

The two men were part of a group of internet entrepreneurs who had gone on holiday together and the events unfolded on the web.

TechCrunch UK editor and Twitter member Mike Butcher posted a series of messages today.

He wrote: "I just got off the phone to one member of the trip. They said ’Everyone literally said they’d just had the best time on the trip. And then it went straight to the opposite. We are all in shock’.

"I never knew Rob but, on behalf of myself and TechCrunch, we’d like to pass on our deepest sympathies to his family."

Fellow entrepreneur Alex Hoye updated Twitter with a series of messages last night, the first of which appealed for help from the online community.

"Urgent: If anyone has or knows Rob Williams of Dolphin Music’s mobile, please send. Mtn rescue in progress," he wrote last night.

It was followed by another update which read: "Rob’s number rec’d via Twitter; Jason now found using GPS/Google maps & phone (@joshmarch org’d); still working on finding Rob."

Mr Williams and Mr Tavaria co-owned online business Dolphin Music.

In addition the internet arm of the business and the Huddersfield store, the group has stores in Liverpool and Gateshead.

The pair launched the company in 1999 after leaving Liverpool University together.

A friend of Mr Williams said his family had flown to the resort and said tributes would be paid to the businessman today.

In a separate incident last week, two Yorkshire tourists fell to their deaths in the French Alps.

Richard Ryan, 27, of York, and Christopher Lockwood, 28, of Leeds, died in the resort of Les Deux Alpes.

Reports from France said the pair fell down a steep valley after leaving a bar late on Wednesday night.

French rescuers said the bodies were found on Friday in the Black Coombe ravine near the Deux Alpes ski station east of Grenoble.

The men appeared to have tried to reach their chalet by taking a short cut in an area marked by many warning signs after leaving a pub at around 2am on Thursday.