Telecoms titan BT is eyeing O2 or EE in a bid to create a wireless telecoms giant in the UK.
The deal could reportedly value O2 at a whopping £6bn.
BT admitted it’s in “preliminary talks” to buy the mobile phone operators.
In a joint venture with Securicor, BT first launched telecom provider Cellnet in 1983. In 1999, BT bought Securicor’s stake and renamed the business BT Cellnet.
Then in 2001, BT spun off the business into O2. In 2005, O2 was snapped up by Spain’s Telefonica for £17.7bn.
In a statement, BT said: “BT Group notes the recent press speculation relating to a potential transaction involving Telefonica UK (O2) in the UK.
“We continue to develop our own plans for providing enhanced mobile services to business and consumer customers, in line with our previous announcements.
“We remain confident of delivering on these plans and have also been exploring ways of accelerating them, including assessing the merits of an acquisition of a mobile network operator in the UK.
“We have received expressions of interest from shareholders in two UK mobile network operators, of which one is O2, about a possible transaction in which BT would acquire their UK mobile business.
“All discussions are at a highly preliminary stage and there can be no certainty that any transaction will occur.
“A further announcement will be made if and when appropriate.”
In a statement to the Spanish stock market, Telefonica, said: “Telefonica informs that, although it is in talks with British Telecom, these talks are in a highly preliminary phase and there is no certainty that a transaction will take place,”
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