3: No IPO, will Voda try to buy it?

On the heels of its ground-breaking flat-rate data plan package, X-Series, U.K. operator 3's parent company, Hutchison Whampoa, is shrugging off previous talk about an initial public offering for the 3G carrier, while Vodafone hints at an acquisition of its nimble rival. According to a report in The Independent, Canning Fok, managing director of Hutchison Whampoa said 3 "is not for sale. It is a very valuable business. I'm not sure how much money [Vodafone's CEO Arun Sarin] has." Fok also commented: "The time for a flotation has passed" since he has spent $25 billion building the business in the U.K. the company no longer needs major investment.

For more on 3's financial future:
- see this article from The Independent

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