3/5/2013 6:02:51 PM
Potential merger on table as Vodafone and Verizon seek to sort out relationship
US operator Verizon Communications could merge with Vodafone Group as the two companies look set to resolve their relationship.
Vodafone Group owns a 45% stake in the Verizon Wireless subsidiary of the American telco. Any potential merger would hit a stumbling block over the new company's leadership and headquarters. Among the other options under discussion, according to a report on Bloomberg, are a buyout or partial sale of Vodafone's stake in Verizon Wireless back to Verizon. If a sale of its Verizon Wireless stake did go ahead, it would continue Vodafone CEO Vittorio Colao's attempts to sell stakes in companies that the operator does not fully control.
The report quoted sources who said no formal discussions about a merger, which could result in one of the biggest takeovers in history, have begun. Both companies have spoken about a potential merger at several times during the past two years. Talks hit an impasse over who would be CEO, where the headquarters would be located and whether Vodafone should dispose of other assets. There have also yet to be 'substantial negotiations' about a possible sale of Vodafone's Verizon Wireless stake.
Author: Graeme Neill