Verizon to vote on USD130 billion Vodafone wireless deal early next year
American telecommunications company Verizon Communications Inc. scheduled a shareholder meeting for January 28 to vote on its USD130 billion acquisition of Vodafone Group PLC's take in their wireless joint venture. According to a report by Bloomberg, Verizon will ask investors to approve the issuance of as many as 1.28 billion shares to complete the transaction. It expects to close the deal by the first quarter of next year.
Verizon is seeking full control of the unit. The New York-based telecommunications company believes that US consumers' increasing use of smartphones and tablets will fuel greater demand for wireless data services, the report said.
Bloomberg said the transaction will wind down a 14-year partnership with Vodafone to operate the largest and most profitable mobile phone carrier in the US.
Verizon announced the deal to buy Vodafone's 45% stake in the joint venture in September. It has sold USD49 billion in bonds to help fund the purchase. Verizon's bond sale is the biggest company debt offering ever, the report said.
By owning the entire Verizon Wireless, the parent company will keep all of the earnings and get more leeway to upgrade its mobile network. Meanwhile, Vodafone said that it will use proceeds from the deal to invest in its own network, Reuters reported.