FRANKFURT (Reuters) - Vodafone has secured close to 20 percent of shares in Kabel Deutschland, meaning it needs another 55 percent to be tendered on Wednesday for its 7.7 billion-euro (6.5 billion pounds) offer for Germany’s largest cable company to succeed.
Vodafone’s 84.50 euro per share offer for Kabel Deutschland runs out at midnight, but it will lapse if holders of less than three quarters of the German company’s shares agree to sell.
The British company, which last week agreed the sale of its share in U.S. operator Verizon Wireless for $130 billion, wants to buy Kabel Deutschland to offer more television and fixed-line services in Germany, its largest European mobile market.
Including shares already tendered, Vodafone held 19.88 percent of Kabel Deutschland’s share capital by 1530 GMT on September 10, Vodafone said in a statement on Wednesday. That compares with close to 12 percent last Friday.
In acquisitions, shareholders often wait until the deadline to tender their shares in case a last-minute rival bid emerges.
Vodafone also faces pressure from Kabel Deutschland’s largest shareholder, U.S. activist investment fund manager Paul Singer, to raise its offer for the German firm but has shown no signs of budging.
Shares in Kabel Deutschland were down 0.3 percent at 84.81 euros by 0728 GMT, while Vodafone was up 0.9 percent.
Reporting by Maria Sheahan; Editing by Greg Mahlich