One of the world’s largest wireless carriers announced on Wednesday that it would sell its 3.2 percent stake in China Mobile, the world’s largest wireless operator by number of subscribers, for roughly $6.6 billion.

Vodafone Group will return about 70 percent of the proceeds to shareholders through a stock repurchase, Bloomberg reports, and the remaining balance will be used to pay down debt. The British mobile giant spent $2.5 billion for an initial 2.18 percent stake in China Mobile in 2000, which it increased to a $3.25 billion investment and 3.2 percent stake two years later.

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