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Hutch Telecom Shareholders Approve India Unit Sale


Shareholders of Hutchison Telecommunications International have approved the $11.1 billion sale of a controlling stake in India's No. 4 cellular operator to Britain's Vodafone Group.

Hutchison Telecom, which agreed in February to sell its 67% stake in Hutchison Essar, plans to pay a special dividend amounting to $4.1 billion following the deal.

"We have received overwhelming support from our shareholders for this transaction which we are delighted to have received," Chief Finance Officer Tim Pennington said after a shareholders' meeting on Friday.

The dividend amounts to HK$6.75 per share or US$12.96 for each of the company's American Depositary shares.

Ports-to-telecoms conglomerate Hutchison Whampoa, which is controlled by Hong Kong billionaire Li Ka-shing, will receive nearly half the special dividend payout.

Hutchison Whampoa owns nearly 50% of Hutchison Telecom. Shares in Hutchison Telecom fell 2% on Friday morning, lagging a flat overall market.