The telco’s $100 billion merger with Australia Post will bring the country’s largest post office to Australia.
The company has signed an agreement to sell its Australia Post business to a group led by billionaire Paul Allen, with the government guaranteeing an $8.6 billion bond issue.
The deal was announced by the Department of Prime Minister and Cabinet.
It is the latest milestone in the telco saga, which has seen its price tag soar from $100.3 billion in 2008 to $200 billion in 2016.
While the deal was still subject to regulatory approvals, it now looks certain to pass.
Mr Allen is the chairman of the Allen family’s Allen Group, and has invested heavily in Australian politics, including his own political party, which was formed in 2009.
He is also chairman of a US investment group called Allen Capital Partners.
In 2016, the Allen group announced it would create a $50 billion fund for Australian entrepreneurs and investors.
It has also been an early supporter of the Australian-Chinese joint venture company.
Australian Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull said in a statement the deal “is an important milestone in our transition to a more transparent and accountable public administration”.
“It is a signal that the Australian Government is committed to achieving the shared goals of public service and business investment in a more sustainable, effective and accountable manner,” he said.
The announcement comes as Australia’s biggest postal services company prepares to make a record profit.
In February, Australian Post announced it had made a record $1.8 billion profit for the year ending March 31.
The profit came on the back of a $400 million cost-cutting programme.
In July, the company also revealed it had lost $2.5 billion of revenue in 2016 and a record revenue shortfall.
The postal services regulator is now considering the deal, and Mr Turnbull said it would have “great implications for the industry”.
Mr Allen’s Australia Post Group owns about 70 per cent of the shares in the Australian Post, with Allen Capital Group owning 30 per cent.
A spokeswoman for Allen said the deal would benefit the postal services industry, which relies heavily on overseas postal services.
The spokesperson said the agreement “will provide certainty for Australians across the country” and would also ensure Australia Post can continue to meet the demands of the post office and the community.
The spokesman added that Mr Allen and his Allen Group “are committed to supporting Australia Post in delivering a strong, sustainable and accountable post office”.