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Kabel Deutschland confirms preliminary offer from Liberty Global

Fibre optic cables of Germany's biggest cable operator, Kabel Deutschland, are pictured at the Kabel Deutschland playout center in Frankfurt
Fibre optic cables of Germany's biggest cable operator, Kabel Deutschland, are pictured at the Kabel Deutschland playout center in Frankfurt

(Reuters) - Kabel Deutschland - Germany's biggest cable operator - confirmed on Monday that they have received a preliminary approach from U.S. media group Liberty Global Plc after a British newspaper reported that the company had put forward a 7.5-billion-euro bid for the company.

Kabel Deutschland did not provide any details of the proposal.

A spokesman for Liberty Global confirmed that the company had made a preliminary approach but declined to comment further.

The Financial Times reported that the offer by Liberty Global, owned by American cable television magnate John Malone, is at about 85 euros per share, citing people familiar with the talks.

Liberty Global's offer sets the stage for a bidding war with Vodafone Group Plc, which last week confirmed that it made an offer to buy Kabel Deutschland but did not provide any details.

Reuters reported on June 14 that Vodafone, the world's second-biggest mobile operator, was considering raising its offer for Kabel Deutschland after an initial 7.2 billion euro bid was knocked back by Kabel Deutschland.

Liberty Global, which operates as Unity Media in Germany, is the number two cable operator in the country and a potential offer would meet scrutiny from competition authorities.

Liberty Global bought UK's Virgin Media in February in a cash and stock deal that valued Virgin's equity at $15.8 billion.

(Reporting by Abhirup Roy in Bangalore; Additional reporting by Harro Ten Wolde and Paul Sandle; Editing by Leslie Adler, Bernard Orr)

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