Verizon could increase valuation for Vodafone deal

07 May 2013 | Mitch Sayers


Two Verizon Communications shareholders have said the company would be happy to pay up to $130 billion for Vodafone’s 45% stake in Verizon Wireless.

Verizon Communications has reportedly hired advisers to help ready a $100 billion deal for the UK operator’s stake in its joint venture in late April.

Two shareholders have claimed the company would be happy with paying an increased sum, which is reportedly what Vodafone is looking for.

Speaking on behalf of Verizon’s reported 10th largest shareholder, Columbia Management Investment, portfolio manager Craig Leopold said: “No way do I dream that $100 billion is going to get this deal done.”

“It's just not going to happen. I think shareholders would be willing to accept a price as high as $130 billion because it would still be accretive to Verizon,” he said.

“But the preference would be a lower price like $120 billion.”

Some shareholders still hold concerns over increasing the amount of the proposed deal.

Bill Jones, president of the Association of BellTel Retirees, which has approximately 72% of members holding Verizon shares, said he sees strategic benefits from such a deal, but has concerns that Verizon will overpay.

Verizon declined to comment.