Hutchison in talks to buy Britain's O2 for $15.4b

Li Ka-shing's overseas diversification spree shows no sign of slowing down with Hutchison Whampoa mulling its chunkiest acquisition ever — that of UK mobile operator O2.

Li Ka-shing controlled Hutchison Whampoa is eyeing its largest acquisition ever.

In an exchange filing on Friday, the company said it has entered into exclusive negotiations with Spanish telecoms group Telefonica for the potential acquisition of its UK mobile subsidiary O2 for up to 10.25 billion $15.4 billion.

The deal has an indicative price of 9.25 billion, to be paid upon closing, and deferred upside interest sharing payments of up to a further 1 billion once the cash flow and combined businesses of Hutchison 3G UK and O2 UK reach an agreed threshold.

HBSC and Moelis are joint advisers to Hutchison on the...

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