Mobile phone giant Vodafone stepped up its expansion in Europe today by unveiling a £6 billion deal to buy Spanish cable operator Ono.

The acquisition of Ono, which offers high-speed broadband and pay-TV to 1.9 million customers in 13 regions of Spain, builds on Vodafone's purchase of Kabel Deutschland for around £6.5 billion last summer.

Vodafone's latest swoop comes as it looks to spend some of the proceeds of its 130 billion US dollar (£78 billion) sale of its stake in US mobile phone operator Verizon Wireless.

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Vodafone is growing strongly in emerging markets such as India, but its European business has been weighed down by economic conditions, competition, and regulator-imposed price changes.

And the sector's focus has been shifting towards "quad play", which involves providing bundles of phone, broadband, mobile and pay-TV services.

Vodafone chief executive Vittorio Colao said: "Demand for unified communications products and services has increased significantly over the last few years in Spain, and this transaction will accelerate our ability to offer best-in-class propositions in the Spanish market."