Vodafone acquires CWW for £1.04 billion

Telecom giant Vodafone today said it had clinched a deal for the acquisition of British firm Cable and Wireless Worldwide (CWW) for about £1.04 billion (about $1.67 billion or Rs 8,800 crore).

India's Tata Communications was the only other contender for the British firm but pulled out of the race after failing to reach an agreement on the offer price.

With Tatas out, the UK-based Vodafone with a major presence in India and a subscriber base of over 150 million, was the only contender left for the bid.

''Vodafone Europe and CWW have reached an agreement on the terms of a recommended cash offer pursuant to which Vodafone will acquire the entire issued and to be issued ordinary share capital of CWW,'' Vodafone said in a filing to the London Stock Exchange.

CWW owns fixed lines that mobile operators use to provide links to mobile transmitters and switching offices, besides providing voice, data and hosting services. Its clients include major British companies such as Next, Tesco and United Utilities.  Also the international cable network it owns connects over 150 countries.

According to the filing, the acquisition of CWW would strengthen the enterprise business of Vodafone in the UK. The terms of the agreement, would see CWW shareholders receive 38 pence in cash for each CWW share held.