Telecoms: Vodafone takes control of Hellas

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VODAFONE has agreed to acquire a further 73 percent stake in Greek broadband and fixed-line telephony provider Hellas Online for e73 million (R1 billion), to help it better compete in the highly competitive market. Vodafone, which bought an 18.5 percent stake in 2009, said the purchase would help it to offer more services to its customers in Greece and better compete with the market leader, OTE. The transaction is expected to complete in the fourth quarter, after which Vodafone Greece will own 91.2 percent of Hellas Online and be obliged to extend a takeover offer for the remaining shares. Vodafone said Hellas had a market share of around 11 percent. – Reuters

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