Phones 4U founder John Caudwell is reported to be close to selling his mobile-phone empire after announcing last month that he was in exclusive talks with a bidder. A deal could net him about £1 billion – a sum far removed from the £300 discount he negotiated from Motorola when he bought his first two mobile phones for £2,700 in 1987. Caudwell Group, which he co-founded later that year in Stoke-on-Trent with his brother Brian, enjoyed sales of £2,121m in 2005. In March 2006, Caudwell Communications, the group’s fixed-line business, was sold to Pipex for an undisclosed sum.
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