Cellular merger: $19 billion U.K. telecoms offer

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Britain’s phone wars are heating up: BT is getting mobile operator EE for £12.five billion ($ 19 billion).

The deal will produce the U.K.’s largest communications operator, offering broadband, cell and tv solutions.

EE is the largest 4G service provider in Europe and has 31 million cell consumers in the U.K. It also runs the Orange and T-Mobile brands.

The agency is owned by Germany’s Deutsche Telekom ( DTEGF ) and French telecoms agency Orange ( FNCTF ) . Deutsche will gain a twelve% stake in BT, and a seat on its board, when the offer goes through. Orange will keep a 4% stake.

The information despatched BT ( BT ) shares up nearly five% in London.

The tie-up is the newest go in a wave of consolidation in the U.K. wi-fi sector, sparking worries about reduced competitors.

Britain’s cell sector is dominated by EE, Vodafone ( VOD ) and O2, which BT spun off in 2001 to support pay out down personal debt.

Previous month Li Ka-shing’s Hutchison Whampoa ( HUWHF ) mentioned it was in talks to spend up to £10.25 billion ($ 15.four billion) for O2. The organization is owned by Spain’s Telefonica ( TEF ) .

Li is a single of Asia’s richest males , worth an believed $ 33 billion. His sprawling business empire presently involves A few, another of Britain’s massive cell operators.

CNNMoney (London) February five, 2015: 5:00 AM ET

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