Sky and Vodafone’s £1.7bn merger to create ‘leading media group’ in New Zealand

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Vodafone has forecasted the new group will generate revenues of £1.4 billion for the 12 months ending June next year

Sky and Vodafone Group have signed a NZ$3,437 million (£1.7 billion) agreement which will see the pair merge and create a “leading media group” in New Zealand.

Vodafone announced the news today (June 9), with Sky acquiring all of the network’s shares in cash. Vodafone New Zealand has over 2.35 million mobile and 500,000 fixed-line connections. Sky TV has 830,000 subscribers in New Zealand. Vodafone has forecasted revenues of NZ$2,914 (£1.4 billion) for the year ending June as a result of the merger.

A statement from Vodafone read: “The proposed transaction will build on the complementary capabilities of both companies to create a leading integrated telecommunications and media group in New Zealand.”

The news follows Brussel’s decision to block Hutchison Whampoa’s £10.25 billion takeover of O2 in May. Competition and pricing fears were reasons cited for its block. The block came shortly after the £12.5 billion BT and EE merger was approved in February.

Vodafone NZ chief executive Russell Stanners, who will head the new company, claims it will offer a wide variety of new products for customers.

He said: “The combination of Sky will bring greater choice, enhanced viewing experiences and will better serve New Zealanders as demand for packaged television, internet and telecoms services increases.”

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