Uncommon Wisdom

Feb 5 2010   2:00PM GMT

DT may be planning T-Mobile IPO or acquisition in U.S.

Tom Nolle Tom Nolle Profile: Tom Nolle

T-Mobile parent Deutsche Telekom may be planning an IPO for the U.S. mobile operation, a partial spin-off or merger, or even a sale of the unit in order to boost its own shares and stave off some protests from the market. The move may also be a reflection of growing concerns over Europe’s economic status, which has emerged as an issue in the global recovery.

T-Mobile is a valuable property and has been considered for a spin-off or sale for some time as its German parent tries to contend with the slippery slopes of the EU telecom world. Regulators in the EU have been at odds with those in Germany (and with DT) on wireline policy, and the EU mobile market is getting increasingly competitive and regulated. In contrast, the T-Mobile operation is benefitting from U.S. smartphone trends. We’ve heard that there have been very tentative talks with Sprint.

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