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Vodafone shocks Germany

Borrower: Vodafone AirTouchType of deal: Two 364-day revolving credits, three-year revolving creditAmount: e30 billionDate: March 2000Bookrunners: Bank of America, Barclays, Citibank/Schroder Salomon Smith Barney, Goldman Sachs Co-arrangers: ABN Amro, Greenwich NatWest, ING Barings, National Australia Bank, Toronto-Dominion and UBS

William Fish

That Vodafone AirTouch succeeded in it's takeover of German company Mannesmann is a story in itself. That it was also, at the time, by far the biggest underwritten transaction in Europe also made it remarkable.

No foreign firm had ever managed to gain control of a German company in a hostile bid before, though Vodafone did have on its side the fact that more than 60% of Mannesmann shares were held by UK and US companies.

Also at Vodafone's elbow was a powerful network of banks that had already seen it through the previous year's $10 billion acquisition of US telecom AirTouch.

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