MINORITY TAKE OUT
Reports out of the US are that Vodafone will sell its 45% stake in the joint venture with Verizon for $130bn, a staggering amount of money, which raises the question of what Vodafone will do with it. My first thought goes to locally listed Vodacom, in which Vodafone owns a majority 65% stake. With a market cap of around R170bn, that 35% Vodafone does not own is worth a relatively modest R60bn or around $6bn. So could it mount an offer to take out minorities? Even with a chunky 50% premium, it would cost more than around $9bn. The problem is that the minority shareholders are the SA Government at 13.9% and the PIC with 3.16%, making up almost half of the minorities and they would surely veto any deal that saw Vodacom being delisted and becoming 100% British-owned.