The British telecoms giant has paid $7.7 billion for 76.57 percent of Kabel Deutschland’s share capital, making it a much stronger rival to Deutsche Telekom.
The European Commission has no concerns about Vodafone’s Kabel Deutschland buy, as the two companies’ German operations are complementary — regulators said the combination could even enhance competition in the multi-play market.
Enough Kabel shareholders have agreed to sell in order to allow the sale to go through. However, there may be further resistance from hedge funds, and regulatory approval is also still needed.
Vodafone(s vod) is having trouble finding enough Kabel Deutschland shareholders willing to sell up. Reuters reports the British mobile giant has secured only around 20 percent of the German cable firm’s shares, and it needs 75 percent by midnight Wednesday or the deal is off. It could be shareholders are waiting until the last minute in case a rival offer comes in — either way, it’s a nailbiting finish for freshly flush Vodafone and its plans of pushing further into the European fixed-line market.
Vodafone has made a “preliminary approach” to Germany’s top cable provider, but no bids have been revealed yet. Reports suggest Liberty Global might also be interested.