This past Friday we broke the news that France Telecom was interested in buying out Swedish Telecom company TeliaSonera for the tune of $42 billion. Turns out that the deal went south.
Marketwatch reported that TeliaSonera’s board and the Swedish government (who own 37% of the company) actually rejected the offer almost immediately. They decided the offer “significantly undervalues” their business; the Finnish government, a 13.7% shareholder, has not yet commented.
Interestingly, FranceTelecom’s CEO was not so shocked at the rejection (talk about a man who handles rejection well!), and said the talks will continue. FT also claimed their intentions were friendly and had no hopes of a hostile takeover. As IntoMobile puts it, “when you think about it doesn’t make much sense when your primary shareholder is another government that may also have some other, non-economic interests.”
If the deal were to go through, this would be France Telecom’s biggest acquisition since it purchased Orange in 2000.
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