Tata Comm, Vodafone deadline for C&WW bid extended

Tata Communications and Vodafone Group Plc were today granted a three-week extension by the UK Takeover Panel to decide whether they would bid for British telecom giant Cable & Wireless Worldwide Plc (C&WW).

Early this month, the Bombay Stock Exchange-listed Tata Commmunications had said in a filing that it is evaluating a possible cash offer for C&WW (See: Tata Communications to bid for British telecom firm C&W Worldwide).

On 13 February Vodafone, the world's biggest mobile phone carrier by revenue, had also confirmed an interest in the languishing British enterprise telecom services provider, saying it was in very early stages of evaluating the merits of a potential offer for C&WW.(See: Vodafone eyes UK's telecom network operator Cable & Wireless Worldwide)

Vodafone had obtained an extension from 12 March to 29 March as per the new UK Takeover Panel rules, the same date that the Tatas had..

Both companies now have to announce by 5:00 pm British Time on 19 April either a firm intention to make an offer or walk away.

Citing sources, Reuters last week reported that Tata Communications is close to finalising a $2-billion term loan from a consortium of banks that include Standard Chartered, which is advising Tata Communications on the potential bid, ANZ, DBS Bank and State Bank of India.