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O2 and EE jostle over £10bn BT acquisition jackpot

We should find out what network BT is going to acquire for its mobile presence in the UK later today, according to the rumour mill.

Techie News reports that BT has been actively talking to both O2 and EE with a view to buying one of the networks, and those talks concluded over the weekend – with the results likely to be announced later today.

That’s not surprising, given that we heard last week that BT would make an announcement before the week was out.

Apparently both companies will accept shares as part of the buyout deal, to lessen the amount of cash BT will have to fork out – that will be around £11 billion for EE, and O2 would be the cheaper option at around the £9 billion mark or just over.

O2 had been chosen as the preferred option according to a recent report in the Daily Mail, but that isn’t known for sure – though industry experts tend to believe this is the path BT is likely to tread. BT has, of course, owned O2 previously, and while EE might be the bigger network with the most 4G coverage, an EE buyout would be a more complex affair which might attract the attention of regulators.

At any rate, we should find out which way things are going later today, with any luck.

Darren Allan

Darran has over 25 years of experience in digital and magazine publishing as a writer and editor. He's also an author, having co-written a novel published by Little, Brown (Hachette UK). He currently writes news, features and buying guides for TechRadar, and occasionally other Future websites such as T3 or Creative Bloq and he's a copy editor for TechRadar Pro. Darrran has written for a large number of tech and gaming websites/magazines in the past, including Web User and ComputerActive. He has also worked at IDG Media, having been the Editor of PC Games Solutions and the Deputy Editor of PC Home.