Verizon buying Vodafone’s wireless stake for $130 billion

NEW YORK (AP) — Verizon will own its wireless business outright after agreeing to a $130 billion deal to buy the 45 percent stake of Verizon Wireless owned by British cellphone carrier Vodafone.

The buyout, the second-largest acquisition deal on record, would give Vodafone PLC additional cash to pursue its expansion ambitions in Europe. Those ambitions include its push to buy up other cellphone providers and to expand into the lucrative world of mobile services.

The deal announced Monday would also give Verizon Communications Inc., the opportunity to boost its quarterly earnings, as it would no longer have to share a portion of proceeds from the nation’s No. 1 wireless carrier with Vodafone.

Verizon expects the deal to boost its earnings per share by 10 percent once the deal closes. It also boosted its dividend.

The deal still has requires approval by regulators and shareholders of both companies. It is expected to close in the first quarter of 2014.

It isn’t expected to have much of an effect on Verizon consumers or on the company’s operations. Vodafone had little influence on Verizon Wireless’ day-to-day operations, and the two companies have kept out of each other’s territory.

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