France Telecom's efforts to acquire TeliaSonera, seemingly dead in the water after the Nordic operator rejected the US$41 billion bid, may still be afloat. In its original offer, tabled on June 5th, FT gave June 19 as its final deadline, after which it said it would walk away. Now France Telecom has lifted this deadline saying, "The period we have given ourselves to decide whether this proposal can be taken forward could be extended beyond the original two weeks." The original proposal was rejected both by the TeliaSonera board and the Swedish Government which has a 37 percent stake in the company. Some observers believe that TeliaSonera is holding out for a higher price although France Telecom is reported to be reluctant to raise its offer. One piece of good news for FT is that Sweden's armed forces see no problems in TeliaSonera being acquired by a foreign company. The armed forces have a strong voice in this situation as they operate a joint defence communications infrastructure with TeliaSonera.
- go to the Financial Times
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