1/16/2013 11:35:11 AM
'No need' for O2 UK flotation
Telefónica has no plans to float O2 UK on the Stock Exchange, its chief operating officer has said.
The global operator held an IPO of its German business late last year in a bid to raise cash for the company. The business has been hit by the economic downturn and held Eu58.2bn of debt at the end of June 2012.
It had been speculated that the UK arm of the business could also be floated on the stock market in a bid to raise further cash. However, in a breakfast briefing this morning, José María Álvarez Pallete dismissed this as a strategy and said a UK IPO was not necessary. He said the UK business contrasted with Germany because he felt the latter was not the value of the sum of its parts. He said it had accelerated its debt refinancing programme and was reducing its levels of debt. Further details about the health of Telefónica's business will be revealed when it announces its next set of results next month.
Álvarez Pallete added that the UK business also provided strategic benefits for the wider company. He said: 'It's in a very attractive market because it is very competitive and we learn a lot.'
Author: Graeme Neill