May 15, 2020

Will BT sell the family silver in its hunt for cash?

Last week BT unveiled a plan to invest £12bn to extend its full fibre network to 20m homes. BT chief executive Philip Jansen told the Financial Times this week that the dividend cut - which frees up around £2.5bn in cash for fibre investment - was the "Final piece of the jigsaw" in preparing the company for a bright future. In the background BT has held talks in the past three weeks with infrastructure investors who are keen for exposure to Openreach, according to people familiar with the matter. BT is set to kick off a lengthy new valuation of its pension liabilities in the summer and trustees would need assurance about their access to Openreach's cash. "In five years, BT will be a better company," he promised.

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