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  4. > Telecom Player & Market - Mergers - Acquisitions

This insight delivers an analysis of the strategies that are shaping the changes at work in the telecom industry worldwide. Drawing on a selection of recent major mergers and acquisitions, IDATE offers an inventory of the various motives behind them – starting with horizontal consolidation and vertical integration – and shares its insights on the deals we expect to see in the coming months and years.

World, Europe, North America, Canada, China, France, Germany, India, Italy, Russia, United Kingdom, United States

4G, acquisitions, antitrust authorities, blocked transactions, cable, competition, consolidation, content services, diversification, downturn in revenues, explosion of Internet use, external growth, horizontal consolidation, IT services, market fluctuations, mergers, mobile, national consolidation, national legislation, price pressure, protectionism, quadruple play, shareholder opposition, telecom operators, telecom sector, telecommunications expansion, telecommunications industry, telecommunications regulator, worked out transactions, AirTouch, Alltel, América Movil, Ameritech, AT&T, AT&T Wireless, Bell Atlantic, BellSouth, Bharti Airtel, China Netcom, China Unicom, Cingular, Clearwire, Comstar United Telesystems, Cyfrowy Polsat, Deutsche Telekom, Embratel Brazil, Essar, France Telecom, Golden Telecom, GTE, Hutchison 3G Austria, Kabel Baden Würtemberg, Liberty Global, Mannesmann, MCI, MCIWorldCom, MetroPCS, Mobile Telesystems, National Telecom Group, Net Servicios, Nextel, Orange, Orange Austria, Polkomtel, Portugal Telecom, Qwest, Rostelecom, SBC, SFR, Sibir Telecom OJSC, Softbank, Sonera, Sprint, SprintNextel, SprintPCS, Telefonica, Telemar Norte Leste, Telia, Telmex Internacional, T-Mobile, T-Mobile USA, UnityMedia, Uralsvyazinform, US West, Verizon Communications, Vimpelcom, Virgin Media, Vivendi, Vodafone, VoiceStream, Volga Telecom, Wind Telecom, Worldcom, Zain Africa

This deliverable is part of "Telcom Player & Market Watch", which includes:
- a biannually updated markets and usage database
- a biannually updated operator database
- a biannually updated status report
- quarterly insights
- direct access to media analysis

Table Of Contents

Telecom Player and Market - Mergers - Acquisitions
Table of Contents

1. Key findings 5

2. The activity of mergers and acquisitions is a cyclical activity 6

3. Merger and acquisition objectives 10
3.1. National consolidation 11
3.2. External growth 15
3.3. Diversification 16
3.3.1. Content services 17
3.3.2. IT and derivative services 19

4. Exogenous factors driving mergers and acquisitions 20
4.1. A tense situation for telecom operators 20
4.1.1. The downturn in revenues 20
4.1.2. The explosion of Internet use 22
4.2. A sometimes highly fragmented industrial landscape 22
4.3. Governments 23

5. Impediments to mergers and acquisitions 24
5.1. Antitrust authorities and telecommunications regulator 24
5.1.1. Blocked transactions 25
5.1.2. Worked out transactions 27
5.2. National legislation 28
5.3. Other obstacles 28
5.3.1. A certain protectionism 28
5.3.2. Market fluctuations and shareholder opposition 29
5.3.3. Inherent operational difficulties or the limits on mergers and acquisitions 29

6. What will be the next mergers and acquisitions? 32
6.1. In cable 32
6.2. In mobile 33
6.2.1. Restructuring of the North American industrial landscape 33
6.2.2. European horizontal consolidation 33
6.2.3. Vodafone at the heart of mergers and acquisitions activity in Europe 34
6.2.4. Horizontal consolidation also on other continents 34
6.3. The offensive of operators from emerging markets 36


Table 1 : Top deals in the 1990s and 2000s 6
Table 2: Selection of recent merger and acquisition operations 7
Table 3: Selection of merger and acquisition operations 8
Table 4: Acquisition of Orange by Hutchison in Austria 11
Table 5: Creation of a joint venture owned equally between Orange and T-Mobile in the UK 12
Table 6: MetroPCS acquisition by T-Mobile USA 13
Table 7: Project for the acquisition of SprintNextel by Softbank 13
Table 8: Broadband Internet consolidation in progress in Australia 14
Table 9: Acquisition of Zain's African operations by Bharti 16
Table 10: Acquisition of NBC Universal by Comcast 18
Table 11: Number of mobile network operators at the end of 2012 23
Table 12 : Aborted merger between SprintPCS and MCIWorldCom 25
Table 13 : Aborted merger between ATandT and T-Mobile USA 26
Table 14: Acquisition of Nextel Communications by SprintPCS in 2004 30
Table 15: Pending acquisition of Telefónica O2 by Hutchison in Ireland 33
Table 16: Acquisition of 21% of Telekom Austria and 28% of KPN by America Móvil 36
Table 17: Acquisition of Wind by Vimpelcom 36


Figure 1: A selection of mergers and acquisitions since 1999 5
Figure 2: Mergers and acquisitions in the telecom sector 9
Figure 3: Changes in mobile services revenues 20
Figure 4: Downward trend in the share price of some European telecom operators over the last decade (2003-2012) 21
Figure 5: Evolution of IP traffic 22
Figure 6: Potential mobile consolidation in the world 35

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