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Telefónica gets €322M for China Unicom stake

Multinationalbroadband and telecoms provider TelefónicaEspaña has sold a 1.51% stake in China Unicom for €322 million, Agence France-Pressereported July 10.

TheSpanishtelco, formerly a state monopoly, sold 361.8 million shares at HK$7.80 pershare, maintaining ownership of about a 1% stake in the company, according to the report.

The move isreportedly part of Telefónica's effort to manage its asset portfolio as well asdeleverage its balance sheet.

The sharesale comes after the European Commission blocked CKHutchison Holdings Ltd.'s proposed acquisition of Telefónica's U.K.unit O2. The Spanish carrier could have gotten €12.1 billion from the deal,which would have been used to reduce its debt of €49.9 billion, the report said.