Euro Telcos Not Feeling The Urge To Merge

With US telecoms merging faster than singles at a speed dating event, you might think that the European telecoms may be getting an urge to merge. Research firm Ovum says that despite improving balance sheets, large telecoms are not looking to indulge in mega-mergers, and instead want to focus on filling out holes in their portfolios. For instance Telecom Italia might go out and make some smaller plays to help expand its broadband presence outside of Italy. BT could go shopping for a corporate networking play, while Deutsche Telekom is looking to expand into Eastern Europe. Recent deals show that -MobilFon/Vodafone ($3.5bn), Turkcell/TeliaSonera ($3.1bn), and Cesky/Telefonica (€2.75bn) – but nothing like mega deals or public tussles between Qwest and Verizon over MCI.