Report: AT&T Eyes European Expansion to Offset Slow Growth in the U.S.
January 17, 2013 9:30 AM
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Analysts are dubious of the AT&T purchase rumors
Reports have surfaced that AT&T is looking to make an acquisition in Europe. AT&T could possibly be considering the purchase of Dutch carrier KPN or UK carrier Everything Everywhere in an effort to offset slowing growth within the U.S. Word of a potential AT&T buyout of Dutch provider KPN sent shares in the Dutch wireless carrier up 3.8% to close at €4.40, a five-week high.
AT&T and KPN have made no official comment on rumors of a potential purchase.
Analyst Jos Versteeg from private Dutch bank Theodoor Gilissen says that companies like AT&T could benefit from buying European rivals to create economies of scale. The analyst says that this move would be similar to the international expansion of British carrier Vodafone. However, a large portion of KPN is owned by a Mexican billionaire named Carlos Slim.
"Slim owns almost 30 percent. I don't see him selling now. He is a long-term investor. AT&T doesn't stand a chance buying KPN," Versteeg said."
Another analyst, Robin Bienenstock from Bernstein, noted that AT&T and Carlos Slim's company America Movili had attempted to work together in a bid for Telecom Italia in the past. She notes that she sees little chance of AT&T making a takeover in Europe.
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1/18/2013 4:13:49 AM
In France I can get a 20 euro a month contract, which has unlimited calls to French mobile phones, 3G Internet access (up to 3 Gb downloads per month, after which speed is limited), free phone calls to fixed lines to 40 different countries.......
WTF would an American service provider offer to Europeans that they don't have already? Even if they buy out an existing provider in the EU, they would have to compete with EU pricing, which is a much lower profit margin than in the USA.
1/18/2013 8:45:05 AM
Lower profit margin is still profit, AT&T could also get better deals on trans-Atlantic and other international communications than European carriers.
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