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BT 3G phone bill was £10bn too much – Bonfield

Is it all France Telecom's fault

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BT spent £10bn too much on acquiring 3G licences, CEO Sir Peter Bonfield told the Sunday Times.

And it's all France Telecom's fault. Chris Gent, head of Vodafone, is supposedly the author of this particular accusation.

In that time-honoured Sunday newspaper formula Gent is "understood" to blame France Telecom, for "allegedly acting as a 'rogue bidder' and forcing up prices".

BT spend £9.5 billion to acquire 3G licences for the UK and Germany, much higher per head of population than elsewhere in Europe. The company is now saddled with £30 billion worth of debt and it is under pressure from shareholders to sell shares in some of its operating businesses.

France Telecom ain't doing so well either. Last week's flotation of Orange raised only half of the amount anticipated just a couple of months ago. ®

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