Telefonica seals deal for Vivo
Telefonica has won its battle for a bigger share of the burgeoning Brazilian telecoms market after raising its offer for Portugal Telecom’s (PT) stake in mobile operator Vivo to €7.5bn (£6.2bn).
The long-sought-after takeover, a coup for Telefonica chairman Cesar Alierta, makes the group the biggest in Brazil whether measured by its 69.2m customers or its 2009 revenues of €11.8bn.
Investors said the Vivo deal offered clear growth prospects and ended the uncertainty that has dogged Telefonica shares since the last chapter of the takeover battle began two months ago.
The Vivo deal has the all-important blessing of Portugal’s government, which rejected Telefonica’s earlier bid, and will allow the Spanish telecom group to offset the impact of slowing revenues from its largely mature European businesses by boosting its presence in the country of 190m.
PT also announced that it has made an agreement with Brazilian phone giant Oi that ensures its continued presence in Brazil and soothes fears it could be relegated to a mainly Portuguese carrier.
Oi said it had signed an agreement with PT for an “eventual” alliance that involves PT taking a 22.4 per cent stake in its operating unit Telemar Norte Leste and also buying shares in the holding company that controls Oi for £3bn.