History and development

The Company was incorporated under English law in 1984 as Racal Strategic Radio Limited (registered number 1833679). After various name changes, 20% of Racal Telecom Plc capital was offered to the public in October 1988. The Company was fully demerged from Racal Electronics Plc and became an independent company in September 1991, at which time it changed its name to Vodafone Group Plc.

Since then we have entered into various transactions which consolidated our position in the United Kingdom and enhanced our international presence. The most significant of these transactions were as follows:

  • the merger with AirTouch Communications, Inc. which completed on 30 June 1999. The Company changed its name to Vodafone AirTouch Plc in June 1999 but then reverted to its former name, Vodafone Group Plc, on 28 July 2000;
  • the acquisition of Mannesmann AG which completed on 12 April 2000. Through this transaction we acquired businesses in Germany and Italy and increased our indirect holding in SFR;
  • through a series of business transactions between 1999 and 2004 we acquired a 97.7% stake in Vodafone Japan. This was then disposed of on 27 April 2006; and
  • on 8 May 2007 we acquired companies with interests in Vodafone Essar for US$10.9 billion (£5.5 billion), following which we control Vodafone Essar.

Other transactions that have occurred since 31 March 2008 are as follows:

19 May 2008 – Arcor: We increased our stake in Arcor for €460 million (£366 million) and now own 100% of Arcor.

17 August 2008 – Ghana: We acquired 70.0% of Ghana Telecommunications for cash consideration of £486 million.

9 January 2009 – Verizon Wireless: Verizon Wireless completed its acquisition of Alltel Corp. for approximately US$5.9 billion (£3.9 billion).

20 April 2009 – South Africa: We acquired an additional 15.0% stake in Vodacom for cash consideration of ZAR 20.6 billion (£1.6 billion). On 18 May 2009 Vodacom became a subsidiary.

10 May 2009 – Qatar: Vodafone Qatar completed a public offering of 40.0% of its authorised share capital raising QAR 3.4 billion (£0.6 billion). The shares were listed on the Qatar Exchange on 22 July 2009. Qatar launched full services on its network on 7 July 2009.

9 June 2009 – Australia: Vodafone Australia merged with Hutchison 3G Australia to form a 50:50 joint venture, Vodafone Hutchison Australia Pty Limited.

10 September 2010 – China Mobile Limited: We sold our entire 3.2% interest in China Mobile Limited for cash consideration of £4.3 billion.

30/31 March 2011 – India: The Essar Group exercised its underwritten put option over 22.0% of Vodafone Essar Limited (‘VEL’), following which we exercised our call option over the remaining 11.0% of VEL owned by the Essar Group. The total consideration due under these two options is US$5 billion (£3.1 billion).

3 April 2011 – SFR: We agreed to sell our entire 44% interest in SFR to Vivendi for a cash consideration of €7.75 billion (£6.8 billion). We will also receive a final dividend from SFR of €200 million (£176 million) on completion of the transaction which, subject to competition authority and regulatory approvals, is expected during the second calendar quarter of 2011.

Back to top

Share this