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December 16, 2014

BT in negotiations to buy EE for £12.5bn

Telecoms giant enters into exclusive talks with Britain's biggest mobile operator.

By Amy-Jo Crowley

BT is looking to boost its presence in the consumer mobile market, after announcing that it wants to buy Britain’s biggest mobile operator EE for £12.5bn.

The telecoms firm, which had been in competing talks to buy rival mobile firm O2, said it had entered exclusive talks lasting "several weeks" in order to carry out the necessary negotiations.

Under the deal, EE’s owners Deutsche Telekom and Orange would take a 12% and 4% stake in BT respectively.

"The proposed acquisition would enable BT to accelerate its existing mobility strategy whereby customers will benefit from innovative, seamless services that combine the power of fibre broadband, wi-fi and 4G," BT said in a statement.

"BT would own the UK’s most advanced 4G network, giving it greater control in terms of future investment and product innovation."

The disclosure comes not too long after speculation over whether BT would opt to buy O2 or EE as part of its return to the mobile phone sector.

It also comes after BT launched a business service aimed at delivering fixed line and mobile calls to the same handset.

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