Wednesday, 22 August 2018 20:38

TPG, Vodafone confirm exploratory talks on 'merger of equals' Featured

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TPG, Vodafone confirm exploratory talks on 'merger of equals' Pixabay

Vodafone Hutchison Australia and TPG Telecom, the third and fourth biggest telecommunications companies in Australia, indicated on Wednesday that they had held talks over a possible merger.

In a statement to the Australian Stock Exchange, Vodafone's parent company, Hutchison Telecoms, noted that TPG Telecom had confirmed that it had engaged in exploratory discussions with Vodafone Hutchison Australia.

"The company has a 50% interest in VHA, and is aware that TPG and VHA have been in discussions regarding a potential merger," it said.

"The company notes that there is no certainty that any transaction will eventuate or what the terms of a transaction would be."

In a similar statement, TPG confirmed that it had engaged in exploratory discussions with VHA over a potential "merger of equals".

In April last year, TPG paid over the top for two lots of 10MHz in the 700MHz spectrum auction, forking out $1.2 billion, and said it planned to roll out a $600 million mobile network.

And in May this year, the company announced that it would a free, unlimited mobile data plan on its first mobile services in the third quarter of 2018.

The entry of a fourth big player into the local mobile market has not been welcome news to incumbents like Telstra and Optus, both of whom have seen their earnings hit by the rollout of the NBN.

Any merger between TPG and Vodafone would make life easier for both Telstra and Optus.

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Sam Varghese has been writing for iTWire since 2006, a year after the site came into existence. For nearly a decade thereafter, he wrote mostly about free and open source software, based on his own use of this genre of software. Since May 2016, he has been writing across many areas of technology. He has been a journalist for nearly 40 years in India (Indian Express and Deccan Herald), the UAE (Khaleej Times) and Australia (Daily Commercial News (now defunct) and The Age). His personal blog is titled Irregular Expression.

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