Vodafone agrees to buy Liberty Global European assets

LONDON — Telecom giant Vodafone has agreed to buy Liberty Global's operations in Germany, the Czech Republic, Hungary and Romania in a deal valued at 18.4 billion euros ($21.8 billion) as the industry moves toward "next-generation" technology carrying voice, data and video over a single network.

Vodafone says the transaction will help it become "the leading next-generation network owner in Europe," with a total reach of 110 million homes and businesses.

Vodafone Group CEO Vittorio Colao said the company is "committed to accelerating and deepening investment in next-generation mobile and fixed networks."

The deal includes a 10.8 billion-euro cash payment to Liberty Global and 7.6 million euros of the company's debt. Vodafone will acquire Unitymedia in Germany, as well as UPC Czech, UPC Hungary and UPC Romania.

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