British telecoms giant Vodafone has sold its 45% stake in US telecoms group Verizon Wireless for $103 billion (£84 billion) in one of the biggest deals in corporate history.

Vodafone has long fought for total control over Verizon Wireless to offer a US counterpart to its subsidiaries around the world, whilst Verizon has fought for total independence from the influence of Vodafone, but neither company could agree a price.

Vodafone announced the deal after the close of trading on the London Stock Exchange, with group chairman Gerard Kleisterlee saying:

“The transaction will position Vodafone strongly to pursue our leadership strategy in mobile and unified communication services for consumers and enterprises, both in our developed markets and across our emerging markets businesses.”

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