New York, Aug. 29: The British telecommunications company Vodafone confirmed on Thursday that it was in talks with Verizon Communications to sell its 45 per cent stake in the American joint venture Verizon Wireless.
The potential deal comes after months of speculation that Vodafone will sell its holding in the joint venture, which analysts said could be worth more than $115 billion.
The deal will be one of the largest worldwide in the last decade and will end a partnership that started in 1999 and has paid billions of dollars in dividends to Vodafone.
One of the biggest hurdles to the potential deal is the large tax bill Vodafone will have to pay to dispose of its holding in Verizon Wireless. Earlier this year, however, Verizon said it could structure any potential transaction to limit Vodafone’s tax liabilities.
In a brief statement on Thursday, Vodafone confirmed that it was in discussions with Verizon. “There is no certainty that an agreement will be reached,” Vodafone said.
Shares in Vodafone rose 8.1 per cent in morning trading in London on Thursday.
A Vodafone spokesman declined to comment further. A representative for Verizon was not immediately available for comment.
Verizon’s renewed push to acquire the stake in Verizon Wireless that it does not already own comes after efforts earlier this year to engineer a potential deal.
No deal materialised, however, and Verizon said in April that it did not have plans to merge or make an offer for all of Vodafone, a takeover that would have included the British company’s stake in Verizon Wireless.