News : Sky Explores Tie-up with Mobile Phone Provider O2
Preston Brook, England, UK, Jan 20, 2015 -- Satellite TV firm Sky is considering a tie-up with mobile phone provider O2, according to reports in the City of London.
The reports come hard on the heels of repeated suggestions that Hong Kong based Hutchinson Whampoa has begun talks to acquire O2 from its current owner Telefonica. Any link-up between Sky and O2 could scupper the Asian proposals.
O2 employs 1,400 people at Preston Brook near Runcorn.
According to the City reports, Sky is unlikely to want to buy O2 outright. Instead, it would seek to join forces with O2 to jointly provide a bundle of TV, broadband, fixed line and mobile phone services to UK customers.
The Hutchinson Whampoa is said to be launched by the Hong Kong tycoon Li Ka-shing, who has a controlling stake in Hutchison Whampoa, which already owns Britain’s mobile operator Three.
The possibility of an O2 deal follows a recent move by BT to acquire EE, a British mobile phone provider.
Current O2 owner Telefonica is thought to be keen to use the proceeds of any such sale to reduce its debts.
Posted by Veronica Silva Cusi, news correspondent
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O2 plc has 100% ownership of mobile network operators in three countries - the UK, Germany and Ireland - as well as a mobile Internet portal business. All of these businesses are branded as ''O2''.
Published: Monday, January 26, 2015