Mobile phone operators “around the world” are seeking mergers as a way to share the costs of capital infrastructure expenditure.
In the US the number of major groups might reduce to three. In Greece worsening economic conditions mean there may soon be only two mobile operators to choose between.
Regulators are trying to stop this from happening, but in doing so they seem rather like King Cnut struggling against the tide: they have forced revenues down, ‘in the consumer interest’, and now companies are struggling to achieve necessary capital expenditure — presumably from a combination of reduced customer income, and a reduced ability to borrow finance.
Mergers and acquisitions are expected to become “a dominant theme of the European market in the next two to three years.”