Vodafone has 76.48% of Kabel Deutschland shares
Frankfurt: Vodafone has secured 76.48 percent of shares in Kabel Deutschland for its 7.7 billion euro (USD10 billion) offer for Germany's largest cable company, the telecom operator said on Monday.
Vodafone had already said on Thursday it had reached the 75 percent minimum acceptance required.
The British company, which this month agreed the sale of its stake in U.S. operator Verizon Wireless for USD130 billion, wants to buy Kabel Deutschland to offer more television and fixed-line services in Germany, its largest European mobile market.
The deal still needs regulatory clearance from the European Commission, with the completion of a first review expected by September 20.
Vodafone said that Kabel Deutschland shareholders who have not yet tendered their shares can do so in the next two weeks. The offer period will end on September 30 at 2200 GMT.
After completion of the deal, Vodafone said it intends to enter a so-called control or domination agreement with Kabel Deutschland.
This would enable Vodafone to determine Kabel Deutschland's strategy and access its cash flows. This is possible under German law once an buyer holds 75 percent of a company.
This will likely be used by some hedge funds, who have built up stakes in Kabel Deutschland in the few past weeks, to try to press more money out of Vodafone, sources familiar with the matter told Reuters last week.
Hedge funds including Elliott Management, Davidson Kempner and York Capital plan legal action in the hope that a court will force Vodafone to offer a higher price in the next stage of the buyout, the sources have said.
Although Elliott tendered some of its shares, its stake in Kabel Deutschland remains above 10 percent, a person familiar with the deal told Reuters on Monday. Elliott had 10.9 pct as of early last week.
Elliot declined to comment.
The tactic that the hedge funds are pursuing in the Kabel Deutschland deal replicates what Elliott did in the takeover of German crane maker Demag by U.S.-based rival Terex two years ago. That court decision is still pending.