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Alltel bought for $27.5bn

US cellco Alltel said late Sunday that it has signed an agreement to be acquired by Goldman Sachs Capital Partners and the Texas Pacific Group for $27.5bn in cash.

Under the agreement, the private equity firms will acquire all of the outstanding common stock of Alltel for $71.50 per share, representing a 23 per cent premium over Alltel’s closing share price prior to media reports of a potential transaction published in late December.

Alltel operates a CDMA network and had around 12 million subscribers at the end of April, making it the nation’s fifth largest carrier.

Alltel’s board of directors has recommended the approval of the transaction by Alltel’s shareholders. The transaction is expected to be completed by the fourth quarter of this year or by the first quarter of 2008.

Scott Ford, Alltel’s chief executive officer, said: “TPG and GSCP are long-term investors who are willing to make the investments necessary to continue to grow our wireless business in all of our markets.”

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