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BT reveals O2 buyout plans

Luke Johnson

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BT O2

BT has confirmed preliminary plans to buy O2 as it looks to re-enter the mobile network space.

With British Telecom having shipped off the O2 brand – then known as BT Cellnet – back in 2005, the company has confirmed it is now in talks with Telefonica over reacquiring the bubbly network.

Although confirming its interest in an O2 buyout, BT has suggested any deal is still a long way off.

All discussions are at a highly preliminary stage and there can be no certainty that any transaction will occur,” the telecoms giant told the BBC.

Echoing BT’s hesitant sentiments, a Telefonica spokesperson added: “Telefonica informs that, although it is in talks with British Telecom, these talks are in a highly preliminary phase and there is no certainty that a transaction will take place.”

Despite revealing its interest in acquiring O2, BT has revealed it has also been approached about buying out the UK arm of another leading network provider.

Although having yet to discuss this third player by name, it has been widely reported that EE is the other network under consideration.

While BT sold Cellnet to Telefonica for £17.7 billion back in 2005, the Spanish company has been shipping a number of key assets over the past year in a bid to reduce its debts.

We have contacted BT for further comment and will update this post with further information as soon as we hear.

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