Telefónica calls off $9b Brasilcel bid

Dylan Bushell-Embling
20 Jul 2010

Spanish Telefónica has called off its tilt at Brazilian cellco Vivo after the deadline for acceptance expired on the weekend.

It had bid €7.15 billion ($9.2b) for Portugal Telecom's stake in the Brasilcel joint venture, which controls the mobile firm.

However, the Portuguese incumbent had been forced to let the offer lapse after two days of board meetings failed to resolve an internal deadlock, the New York Timesreported.

As a result, Telefónica followed through on an earlier pledge to drop the bid if it was not accepted by July 16.

The future of the Brasilcel holding company is now in doubt, as Telefónica has already threatened to seek to dissolve the company as an alternative means of getting their hands on Vivo.

Telefónica had raised its offer for Brasilcel twice. Most shareholders approved Telefónica proposal in June, but the deal was then blocked by the Portuguese government in a controversial move that attracted the ire of both Telefónica and the EU.

Telefónica has previously also threatened to attempt a hostile takeover of Portugal Telecom, but would face the opposition of the Portuguese government.


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