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Owner of Three UK will purchase O2 for £10.25 billion

Talks between Hutchison Whampoa and Telefonica began in January of this year. Now this is all but a done deal, with approval needed from British regulators, which is expected to take up to a year.

From O2 (opens in new tab):

Hutchison Whampoa has today agreed definitive terms to acquire O2 in the UK from Telefónica. The deal agreed is the result of a period of exclusive discussions between the two companies. Closing of the deal is subject to regulatory approvals, but would bring together two respected mobile businesses in the UK.

Together, Three and O2 have the largest number of subscribers in the UK, followed by rivals Vodafone and EE. O2 currently has around 22 million subscribers, while Three has around 8 million.

Source: O2 (opens in new tab), Telefónica

Joseph Keller is the former Editor in Chief of iMore. An Apple user for almost 20 years, he spends his time learning the ins and outs of iOS and macOS, always finding ways of getting the most out of his iPhone, iPad, Apple Watch, and Mac.

  • I can't see anything but price rises in the future :(
  • So they smaller company with only 8million subscribers buys the big one which has 22 million subscribers? Sent from the iMore App
  • that's right. - Hutchison 3 has always been the underdog in the UK market. it didn't get going till 03/03/03, it only operated a 3G network at launch, and had to sign a carrier deal for 2G with Telefonica (in 2006 it was moved to orange) - Telefonica is saddled with boat loads of debt, and has been wanting to offload some of its companies for a while. It sold hutch its O2-IE business, and the talk was it wanted to get out the UK market too. - Hutch is very cash rich, so this is very good business for them.
  • good news for me, more coverage as i'm on GiffGaff what uses O2 but the Three backbone network is way faster then any one in the UK also uses 4G when available at no extra cost, SWMBO is on Three.