MmO2 sells off Dutch unit

O2 Netherlands is to be sold to a private equity company, after losses of over £100m for the last financial year

Mobile phone giant mm02, formerly known as BT Wireless, has announced it is to sell its Dutch operation, O2 Netherlands, for £17m.

The decision will cost mm02 a £1.4bn charge on top of the 2bn euros that it has invested in the subsidiary over the past three years, according to a report in The Times.

The unit is being bought by private equity firm Greenfield Capital Partners, though the new parents will not be taking on the company's debts. It is not clear at this stage if the purchase will result in job losses.

O2 Netherlands reported revenues of £200m for the year ended 31 March, with losses totalling £119m. The unit was previously known as Telfort Mobiel prior to the O2 rebranding, which also saw UK operator BT Cellnet branded as O2.

The news was welcomed by investors, with shares in mmO2 rising 6 percent on Tuesday morning.

Headquartered in Amsterdam, Telfort Mobiel was a joint venture between BT and Dutch national rail company Nederlandse Spoorwegen. Founded in 1996, the two companies held a 50 percent stake in the company.

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