Vodafone says it could sell US stake

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Mobile phone group Vodafone has promised to consider any offer for its 45 per cent stake in US joint venture Verizon Wireless if it delivers enough value for shareholders.

The firm’s partner in the business, Verizon Communications, has made little secret of its desire to buy out Vodafone in a deal that could attract a price tag of $120 billion (£78bn).

Speaking at yesterday’s annual general meeting, chairman Gerard Kleisterlee said the board regularly reviewed the holding, which delivered a dividend of £2.1bn in June, adding: “If we see proposals that generate more value for shareholders, we will consider them.”

Chief financial officer Andy Halford said after the AGM that the company was in a very strong position and happy with the status quo. He added: “The great thing is the business is a good one, most people would love to own that business, so it’s just a nice position to be in.”