Telefonica halts O2 UK sale following Brexit vote

30 Jun 2016

In the wake of the United Kingdom’s referendum in which it voted to leave the EU, Spain’s Telefonica has announced that it is shelving plans to sell a stake in its British unit, O2 UK. According to Bloomberg, which cites a regulatory filing made yesterday (29 June), Telefonica has confirmed it will consolidate O2 back into its financial statements, and no longer present the unit as discontinued operations.

Following the regulatory rejection for the proposed sale of O2 UK to Hong Kong’s CK Hutchison last month, it had been suggested that Telefonica was examining alternatives, including the sale of a minority stake via an IPO. Now, however, with the stake sale said to be off the table for now as the British pound and stock markets fall, the Spanish telecoms giant has been cited as saying that it ‘continues to explore different strategic alternatives for O2 UK, to be implemented when market conditions are right’.

Spain, O2 UK, Telefonica