07/23/2013 07:33 EDT | Updated 09/22/2013 05:12 EDT

Telus doubles size of potential stock buybacks to $1 billion

VANCOUVER - Telus Corp. (TSX:T) says it's willing to spend up to $1 billion on share buybacks by the end of this year — twice as much as under the telecom company's original plan.

Its stock price dropped precipitously from a 52-week high of $37.94 in late May to as low as $29.52 on June 27 amid reports that U.S. telecom giant Verizon had offered to buy Wind Mobile to build a presence in the Canadian market.

Telus stock has since recovered and closed Monday at $30.65.

As of June 30, Telus had spent about $281 million buying back public stock, paying an average of $33.40 for about 8.4 million shares.

The amended normal course issuer bid, if approved by regulators, gives the Vancouver-based telecom company the right, but not the obligation, to buy back up to 31.9 million common shares from the public markets by Dec. 31.

"The company's board of directors believes that such purchases are in the best interest of Telus and that such purchases constitute an attractive investment opportunity and desirable use of Telus' funds that should enhance the value of the remaining shares," the company said in a statement late Monday.