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Vodafone Sells Japanese Operation to SoftBank for �8.9 billion

Posted on 17-Mar-2006 22:14 | Filed under: News


Vodafone Group has agreed to sell its 97.68% interest in Vodafone Japan to SoftBank. The sale values Vodafone Japan at an Enterprise Value of approximately �1.8 trillion (�8.9 billion) of which �6.8 billion will be received in cash, with subsequent distribution of �6 billion of cash to shareholders.

According to Arun Sarin, Chief Executive of Vodafone, "It has become increasingly clear that the greatest operational benefits come from strong local and regional scale. We seek to deploy capital only where we can generate superior returns for our shareholders in markets that offer a strong local position. In the case of Japan, we have been making progress on the turnaround in recent months. However given the relative competitive position of the business, the reduced prospects for superior long term returns and a good offer from SoftBank, the Board took the decision to sell."

While the nominal enterprise value derived from the cash proceeds and the face value of the non-cash instruments is �2.0 trillion (�9.8 billion), Vodafone estimates that the fair value of the transaction on an Enterprise Value basis is �1.8 trillion (�8.9 billion)

SoftBank will assume approximately �0.8 billion of external debt and other liabilities outstanding from Vodafone Japan.

Parallel to the sale, Vodafone and SoftBank have entered into discussions regarding the formation of a joint working relationship involving participation in the supply and distribution of data and content. The purpose of the relationship is also to provide knowledge and information sharing between the two parties and to ensure that Vodafone continues to have access to the ongoing technological and service developments in the mobile industry in Japan