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Vodafone Completes Acquisition Of Liberty Global's European Operations

(Alliance News) - Vodafone Group PLC said Thursday it has completed the acquisition of Liberty ...

Alliance News 1 August, 2019 | 10:09AM
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(Alliance News) - Vodafone Group PLC said Thursday it has completed the acquisition of Liberty Global PLC's operations in Germany, Czech Republic, Hungary and Romania for the enterprise value of EUR18.4 billion, as it plans to reduce its debt.

In May 2018, the FTSE 100 telecommunications firm first announced the deal to acquire Liberty Global PLC's operations, with approval from the European Commission granted earlier in July.

The acquisition was also conditional on the implementation of a remedy package, comprising a cable wholesale agreement signed between Vodafone and Telefonica Deutschland in May, allowing the latter to offer broadband services on Vodafone's network in Germany.

Also included was a commitment to ensure enough capacity is available for over-the-top television distribution.

Following the acquisition, Vodafone now has a total next generation network reach of 124 million homes and businesses.

"With the acquisition of Liberty's assets in Germany and CEE, we have completed our transformation into Europe's leading converged operator. Not only have we reshaped our business, becoming the owner of the largest gigabit-capable next generation network infrastructure in the region, we are now able to play our part in realising the digital society for millions of customers," said Chief Executive Officer Nick Read.

On Friday last week, Vodafone said it would would separate its European tower infrastructure business into a new entity, with plans to either hold an initial public offering or dispose of a minority stake.

Later on, Vodafone announced an agreement to combine its Italian tower portfolio with INWIT SpA, the towers unit of Telecom Italia.

Vodafone is set to receive EUR2.14 billion in cash and a 37.5% stake in the newly combined company.

Vodafone and Telecom Italia will both recapitalise INWIT after the business combination up to a maximum of 6.0 times debt to Ebitda, subject to achieving a BB plus or equivalent credit rating.

The combined entity will remain listed on the Milan Stock Exchange and, based on the 30-day volume-weighted average price of INWIT shares prior to the announcement, Vodafone's share is worth around EUR3.13 billion, implying an enterprise value for Vodafone's towers business of EUR5.27 billion.

Vodafone will use the cash generated from the combination and recapitalisation to retire its existing debt.

Shares in Vodafone were up 0.7% at 151.10 pence on Thursday.

By Dayo Laniyan; dayolaniyan@alliancenews.com

Copyright 2019 Alliance News Limited. All Rights Reserved.

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Securities Mentioned in Article

Security Name Price Change (%) Morningstar
Vodafone Group PLC 152.12 GBX -1.60

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Alliance News

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