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John Malone concedes Kabel Deutschland chase over

Liberty Global owner John Malone has admitted his company has lost the race to buy German cableco Kabel Deutschland to Vodafone.

In June, Vodafone agreed a deal to buy the cable provider for €7.7 billion (US$10 billion) and Malone told Bloomberg that the telco had beaten it to a German deal.

“Unfortunately the Vodafone guys have preempted us in trying to consolidate the rest of Germany,” Malone, told the news wire in a phone interview. “We wish Vodafone good luck. We’re hoping they’ll be a good fellow traveler in the cable business.”

The cable mogul added that after the Vodafone deal and Liberty itself having acquired Virgin Media in the UK and Unity Media Kabel BW in Germany, its M&A options have narrowed in the region although there might be opportunities elsewhere in Europe.

“We’re getting to the point where in northern Europe, we’re pretty much as far as we can go,” Malone told Bloomberg. “If southern Europe sort of hits the bottom, as it were, there are things we can do further south in scale.”