Vodafone mulling Cable & Wireless acquisition


Mobile operator Vodafone today admitted it was considering a bid for Cable & Wireless Worldwide (CWW), in response to media reports over the weekend.

Vodafone was initially reticent about a potential deal for CWW, which has reported profit warnings over the past year. Reports suggested Vodafone would lodge a 700 million bid.

"Vodafone regularly reviews opportunities in the sector and confirms that it is in the very early stages of evaluating the merits of a potential offer for CWW," the company said.

There is no certainty that an offer will be made nor as to the terms on which any offer might be made.

"There is no certainty that an offer will be made nor as to the terms on which any offer might be made. Any offer, if made, will be in cash but Vodafone reserves the right to change the specie of consideration. A further announcement will be made in due course, if appropriate."

Vodafone will have to make an announcement by 12 March 2012, either confirming "a firm intention" to make an offer or that it does not intend to make an offer.

CWW showed its chief executive John Pluthero the door in November 2011, replacing him with Vodafone executive Gavin Darby after just four months in charge.

The move came after various CWW profit warnings and a plummeting share price.

CWW's most recent results from November saw revenues dip 4.5 per cent year-over-year, whilst pre-tax profit slumped to 35 million from 64 million.

At the time of publication, CWW had not responded to a request for comment on Vodafone's interest.

This year, CWW looks set to focus on upping its hosting game. In late January, the company appointed a new hosting managing director, Michelle Senecal de Fonseca, and a day later said it was to expand its data hosting capacity by 25 per cent through a 15-year agreement with data centre operator, Infinity.

Tom Brewster

Tom Brewster is currently an associate editor at Forbes and an award-winning journalist who covers cyber security, surveillance, and privacy. Starting his career at ITPro as a staff writer and working up to a senior staff writer role, Tom has been covering the tech industry for more than ten years and is considered one of the leading journalists in his specialism.

He is a proud alum of the University of Sheffield where he secured an undergraduate degree in English Literature before undertaking a certification from General Assembly in web development.