Significant deals reported this week include Vodafone and Tata Communications bidding over US$1bn for UK -based Cable & Wireless Worldwide, Turkcell mulling a US$1.4bn bid for Vivacom in Belgiumand France Telecom Orange spending US$2bn on a takeover of Mobinil in Egypt. Telenor of Norway has also increased its stake in global operator Vimplecom, while UAE-based Etisalat has been talking about making acquisitions again.
A number of the leading executives from telecom operators and investment banks are meeting at the TMT M&A Forum in London on March 14 to discuss potential deals and strategic issues surrounding transactions and financing. Companies speaking at the open forum includeEtisalat, Telenor, Tata Communications,Batleco, Goldman Sachs, UBS, Citi, Macquarie, Silicon Valley Bank, Clifford Chance and SNR Denton.
There are several factors driving deals and we are entering an exciting period of transition for the telecom sector as operators realign portfolios, said Dominic Lowndes, Editor of TMT Finance News the official publication of the TMT M&A Forum. What is especially interesting is that mobile operators from high growth emerging markets are looking at acquisitions in mature markets, while European operators are looking to exit.
The pressure to stem profit falls is also driving sales and acquisitionsof infrastructure, and investment into new technology and spectrum,said Lowndes. With private equity appetite returning and transitional technologies and applications entering the market through machine to machine, mobile money and social media applicationsthis is likely to be a very busy year for M&A advisers.
The TMT M&A Forum 2012(www.tmtfinance.com/merger) features 6 leadership panel debates on critical areas for mergers and acquisitions activity in the telecoms media and technology sector: Global Telecom Strategy, The Race for Spectrum, M&A Advisers Panel, Investing in the Next Wave of Technology and Digital Leadership Who will control the customer interface?
Over 30 speakers have been announced includingDaniel Ritz, Chief Strategy Officer of Etisalat Group; Claude Sassoulas, Managing Director, Europe and Americas, Tata Communications;Macario Prieto, Head of Telecoms EMEA, Goldman Sachs; Christian Lesueur, Managing Director, Head of EMEA Media & Telecoms, UBS; andOscar Jazdowski, Head of Origination, Silicon ValleyBank.