Vodafone nears deal to buy Liberty Global European assets

Francesca Washtell
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The name Vodafone originated from the words 'voice', 'data' and 'phone' (Source: Getty)

Telecoms giant Vodafone is close to announcing a deal to buy large parts of Liberty Global’s European assets, according to reports.

The €18bn (£15.7bn) agreement is expected to be announced as early as today, according to reports in the Financial Times.

US billionaire John Malone’s Liberty Global is looking to sell its German cable group Unitymedia in Germany, as well as its smaller businesses in Hungary, Romania and the Czech Republic.

Read more: Vodafone is considering a deal with the owner of Virgin Media

Vodafone, the world’s second biggest mobile operator, confirmed in February it was in talks about buying Liberty’s assets in the continental European countries where they overlap: Germany, Czech Republic, Hungary and Romania.

Vodafone was not available for comment. Liberty Global declined to comment.

The talks coincide with a mergers and acquisitions boom in Britain as company bosses take advantage of the availability of cheap debt financing and confidence in the global economy to strike deals.

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