Vodafone is studying a placement that could be the largest in Europe for 3 years. The British group is seeking to raise 4 billion euros from offering a stake in its European towers unit, “Vantage”. The value of the towers unit could reach 20 billion euros.

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Britain’s Vodafone Group is considering raising about 4 billion euros (one euro equals $ 1.18) from an initial public offering of the European zodiac unit early next year, according to sources familiar with the process.

The sources said that Vodafone plans to list its unit, Vantage Towers, on the Frankfurt Stock Exchange, in a deal that could estimate the unit’s value, including debt, at about 20 billion euros, which could make it the largest initial public offering on a European stock exchange in more than three years, according to For data compiled by Bloomberg.

According to the sources, discussions are ongoing and the final size and timing of the offering depends on market conditions, and whether Vodafone will also list its stake in “Cornstone” for telecommunications infrastructure, a joint venture in the United Kingdom with Spain’s Telefónica.

Early meetings with institutional investors focused on fixed-return and long-term wireless infrastructure assets revealed strong demand for Vantage shares.

A Vodafone representative declined to comment. The company said earlier that it plans to use the proceeds of any sale to reduce the group’s debt.

According to its website, Vantage has more than 68,000 websites in nine markets. Vodafone CEO Nick Reed said last July that Vodafone’s decision to list its business in Germany reflects the large share it forms in the tower portfolio.

Within a short period, “Vantage” may lose its position as the largest mobile tower company in Europe, when the Spanish telecommunications company, Celnex, implements a deal to acquire the “CK Hutchin” holding company, which will add 24.6 thousand new towers to it, in a deal that may be worth 10 billion euro.

The number of towers currently owned by “Celenex” is about 60,000.

Since the beginning of the year, European companies have raised 23 billion dollars in IPOs, a figure equivalent to 20 percent of the amounts raised by companies on Asian stock exchanges and less than a fifth of the number collected by companies that have been offered for subscription in the American markets.



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