Tesco set to sell off mobile business unit

Written by on May 11, 2015 in Snippets with 0 Comments

(Reuters) – Tesco Plc is in talks with bankers to put its mobile business up for sale in an effort to divest non-core assets, the Financial Times reported, citing people familiar with the matter.

Tesco Mobile could fetch “hundreds of millions of pounds”, although the value of the company will in part be the brand itself, the Financial Times said.

TalkTalk, which acquired Tesco’s TV service Blinkbox last year, and O2 are said to be amongst the potential bidders, the FT said.

Analysts expect the deal to be cleared by EU authorities, but only after its agreed upon to open the market to similar branded competitors, the paper said.

Tesco and O2 declined to comment.

TalkTalk could not be immediately reached for comment outside regular business hours.

Hutchison in January agreed to buy Telefonica’s British mobile unit O2 for nearly $15.4 billion (£9.95 billion).

(Reporting by Ankush Sharma in Bengaluru and James Davey in London; Editing by Savio D’Souza)

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