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#Business

Telefonica Chairman lands in London to meet with BT for O2 acquisition deal

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BT is expected to make a choice between a takeover of O2 or EE by as early as next week according to previous reports and latest reports now indicate that Telefonica chairman Cesar Alierta flew to London on Thursday to try to convince BT for the deal.

BT has been in active acquisition talks with O2 owner Telefonica, and EE owners Deutsche Telekom and Orange, for a few weeks now. However, the telecoms giant has not yet made a decision on which company to opt for – either for UK’s number one operator owned by two companies, EE, or for UK’s number two and less risky affair O2.

People familiar with the situation have reported that Telefonica is willing to agree a deal which includes taking some shares in BT. Meanwhile Orange and Deutsche Telekom, have also agreed to match the Spanish group’s offer to be partly paid with BT shares, the sources said. However, the final decision on the deal will ultimately rest with BT to decide whether or not it wants EE or O2 on its shareholder register.

Meanwhile, sources claim that Hutchison Whampoa, the owner of Britain’s smallest mobile operator, Three is in line to make a bid for the one not teaming up with BT.

BT, Telefonica, Orange and Deutsche Telekom all declined to comment.