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Shareholders back Sky-Vodafone NZ merger

Sky Network Television shareholders have approved the firm’s planned NZ$3.44 billion (US$2.49 billion) merger with Vodafone New Zealand.

Peter MacourtAt a special meeting of shareholders yesterday some 99.8% approved the deal, with 78.6% cent of the Sky TV shares on issue voted by proxy.

Addressing shareholders, Sky chairman of the board Peter Macourt (pictured) said together with Vodafone the company has the opportunity to become a “leading integrated telecommunications and media platform”.

“As you are all aware, our industry is at a crossroads,” he said. “The internet has permanently changed the way people consume media and entertainment services. To stay ahead of the game, we must find new and innovative ways to deliver our content.”

“The acquisition of Vodafone NZ will allow the combined group of Sky and Vodafone NZ to deliver New Zealand’s premium entertainment content over both fibre and mobile networks, and provide our customers withgreater choice and a better entertainment experience.”

Under the terms of the deal, Sky will purchase Vodafone NZ from its parent company for NZ$3.44 billion. This will be funded by payment of NZ$1.25 billion in cash and the issue of new Sky shares at a price of NZ$5.40 per share. Vodafone will become a 51% majority shareholder in Sky. The deal was agreed in June.