BT has agreed to buy mobile operator EE in a cash and shares deal worth £12.5bn, the company has revealed.
The group announced in December it was in talks to buy Britain's largest mobile operator and the deal, which will be partly financed with a £1bn share issue, will now create the UK's leading communications provider.
EE's current owners Deutsche Telekom and Orange will hold stakes of 12% and 4% in BT, with Deutsche getting a seat on the board. Gavin Patterson, BT chief executive, said: "This is a major milestone for BT as it will allow us to accelerate our mobility plans and increase our investment in them.
"The UK's leading 4G network will now dovetail with the UK's biggest fibre network, helping to create the leading converged communications provider in the UK." The deal is subject to approval by shareholders and the Competition and Markets Authority. It is expected it could be completed by the end of the financial year ending in March 2016.
BT said it plans to sell a full range of its services to the combined customer base, including broadband, fixed line and pay-TV services to EE customers who do not currently use those services.
Mr Patterson added: "This is a very exciting time and a new chapter for BT."
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