Telefónica taps up Finsbury for possible O2 flotation

O2 owner Telefónica has brought in Finsbury as it considers options for its UK business, including a possible IPO, PRWeek has learned.

Sponsorship: 02 Wear the Rose campaign from the 2015 Rugby World Cup
Sponsorship: 02 Wear the Rose campaign from the 2015 Rugby World Cup

Earlier this month, Spanish telecoms giant Telefónica announced it was considering its strategic options in the UK, which included a potential IPO.

This was seen as an alternative plan to reduce debt after the aborted potential acquisition of O2 - which would have been worth around £10bn ($13bn) - by Hutchison Whampoa, the Hong Kong-based owner of UK network Three. That deal was blocked on competition grounds by the European Commission in May.

Global agency Finsbury has been appointed in a supportive role for the potential flotation, reporting to Nicola Green, director of comms and reputation at O2.

Earlier this month Telefónica announced plans to float a minority stake in Telxius, its infrastructure business that owns mobile masts and fibre-optic cables, in Barcelona, Bilbao, Madrid and Valencia stock exchanges later this year.

PRWeek previously reported that Citigate Dewe Rogerson was working with Telefónica around the proposed Hutchison deal.

Green confirmed Finsbury's appointment when contacted by PRWeek. Finsbury declined to comment.

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