& cplSiteName &

Eurobites: AT&T Linked to Irish Acquisition

Ray Le Maistre
8/4/2014
50%
50%

Also in today's regional roundup: BT enters the 4G fray with enterprise service offering; Etisalat unit mulls IPO; Arris gets some action in Poland.

  • AT&T Inc. (NYSE: T) has been in talks with Irish national operator eir about a potential acquisition, according to a report in Ireland's Sunday Business Post (subscription only). Referencing the report, the Irish Times notes that AT&T officials are considering the acquisition as a "low-tax route into Europe." AT&T has long been linked to potential acquisitions in Europe, though with bigger targets such as Vodafone Group plc (NYSE: VOD) in mind. Eircom, which has about 2 million retail customers and annual revenues of around €1.3 billion (US$1.74 billion), has been struggling in recent years, but has been cutting costs aggressively, restructuring its debts, and investing in its broadband infrastructure. The operator, which is owned by a consortium of lenders, announced in May that it is "exploring a number of strategic options": An IPO was believed to be one of those options, but now a trade sale looks like an alternative option, with a price tag in the region of about €3 billion ($4 billion) likely. (See Euronews: AT&T Nixes Vodafone Bid Plan , Eurobites: Eircom Joins Vectoring Club and Eircom Reports Fiscal Q2 .)

  • BT Group plc (NYSE: BT; London: BTA) has entered the LTE market with the launch of 4G services, plus unlimited WiFi access to the operator's national network of 5 million 802.11 access points, for all new BT Business Mobile customers. The service is offered over the national network of BT's new MVNO partner EE . Existing BT Business Mobile customers will be offered the 4G service if they re-sign. The UK operator recently launched its One Phone service, an integrated fixed-mobile offering that marked its first major push into the UK mobile services market in more than a decade. BT is expected to announce its plans for a consumer 4G service later this year. (See BT Embraces Small Cells for Mobile Push and Euronews: BT Signs 4G MVNO Deal.)

  • Still with the UK mobile sector… Regulator Ofcom has revised its planned changes to the annual 900 MHz and 1800 MHz spectrum license fees applied to the UK's mobile operators, but the changes still aren't to the operators' liking. While Ofcom has scaled back its planned increases, the operators still face a massive hike compared with the 2G and 3G spectrum fees currently paid. The regulator is now seeking further feedback from the industry in the form of a new "consultation." For more details, see this announcement from Ofcom.

  • Etisalat Misr , the Egyptian unit of Middle East giant Etisalat , is planning a US$500 million IPO on the country's stock exchange, according to this Bloomberg report.

  • Polish cable operator Multimedia Polska is to deploy the E6000 Converged Edge Router (CER) from Arris Group Inc. (Nasdaq: ARRS) as part of a network upgrade that will boost its "channel density and readiness for deploying converged services." Arris regards its E6000 as "the industry's leading CCAP [Converged Cable Access Platform] solution." (See Arris Rides Capex Wave Again.)

    — Ray Le Maistre, Circle me on Google+ Follow me on TwitterVisit my LinkedIn profile, Editor-in-Chief, Light Reading

    (3)  | 
    Comment  | 
    Print  | 
  • Newest First  |  Oldest First  |  Threaded View        ADD A COMMENT
    DOShea
    50%
    50%
    DOShea,
    User Rank: Blogger
    8/4/2014 | 9:56:38 AM
    Re: Interesting angle....
    The timing also is interesting in that European Commission will soon have a chief who has suggested treating consolidation in Europe with a light touch, so maybe the first of many deals for AT&T if that regime plays out.

    Re: the R&D talent, there could be something to that as well, and if AT&T becomes committed to a stronger presence in Europe, Ireland could be a good place to establish one of its Foundry innovation centers.
    DOShea
    50%
    50%
    DOShea,
    User Rank: Blogger
    8/4/2014 | 9:52:08 AM
    Re: Interesting angle....
    Re: affinity between Ireland and the US being strong, if this deal somehow results in the ability to download a Guinness from St. James Gate via 100G submarine cable, fiber and DSL, directly to my desktop whenever I please, then I heartily approve of this deal.
    Ray@LR
    50%
    50%
    Ray@LR,
    User Rank: Blogger
    8/4/2014 | 9:20:02 AM
    Interesting angle....
    I'm sure there are plenty of accounting reasons to buy ion Ireland but it would also be an interesting cultural move too... that affinity between Ireland and the US is strong, right?

    Plus there are plenty of very smart telecom people in uireland if AT&T was to open up a new R&D/innovation lab in Europe...
    From The Founder
    Following a recent board meeting, the New IP Agency (NIA) has a new strategy to help accelerate the adoption of NFV capabilities, explains the Agency's Founder and Secretary, Steve Saunders.
    Flash Poll
    Live Streaming Video
    Charting the CSP's Future
    Six different communications service providers join to debate their visions of the future CSP, following a landmark presentation from AT&T on its massive virtualization efforts and a look back on where the telecom industry has been and where it's going from two industry veterans.
    LRTV Interviews
    BT's McRae Sheds Light on 4K Strategy

    5|25|17   |   4:45   |   (0) comments


    At Light Reading's Big Communications Event 2017 in Austin, Texas, BT Group's Chief Network Architect Neil McRae talks about what it took for BT to broadcast live sports in 4K. Catch up with all our BCE coverage at http://www.lightreading.com/bce.asp.
    From the Founder
    How the NIA Aims to Advance NFV

    5|25|17   |   08:07   |   (0) comments


    Following a recent board meeting, the New IP Agency (NIA) has a new strategy to help accelerate the adoption of NFV capabilities, explains the Agency's Founder and Secretary, Steve Saunders.
    LRTV Custom TV
    Better Solutions That Address Growing Scale

    5|25|17   |     |   (0) comments


    For Comcast, the X1 rollout and 17-fold increases in broadband speeds in the past 16 years are among factors driving the need for Energy 2020 solutions that reduce cost and consumption, says Mark Hess.
    LRTV Custom TV
    Ethernity Network Delivers Instant Offloading of Network Functions With All-Programmable Intelligent NIC

    5|25|17   |     |   (0) comments


    David Levi, CEO of Ethernity Networks, explains that programmability of the hardware makes the company's All-Programmable Intelligent NIC uniquely beneficial for communications service providers that need advanced data appliances with agile support of virtualization. Utilizing the company's patented network processing technology, Ethernity offers data path ...
    LRTV Documentaries
    BCE 2017: Vodafone Gets Obsessed With Cloud-Native

    5|25|17   |     |   (0) comments


    Vodafone's Matt Beal updates us on Project Ocean and explains why simple virtualization isn't enough of a goal for network transformation. Catch up with other BCE 2017 keynotes and news at http://www.lightreading.com/bce.asp.
    LRTV Documentaries
    BCE 2017: Intel's Take on Network Transformation

    5|24|17   |     |   (0) comments


    In this BCE 2017 keynote, Lynn Comp discusses Intel's vision for areas such as analytics, automation and service assurance. For more videos and BCE coverage, see http://www.lightreading.com/bce.asp.
    LRTV Documentaries
    Order From Chaos: The Steve Saunders BCE Keynote

    5|24|17   |   17:27   |   (0) comments


    Kicking off BCE 2017, Light Reading founder Steve Saunders lays blame for NFV's slow ramp-up and urges telecom to return to old-fashioned standards building and interoperability testing.
    Think of this as the video sequel to the recent columns he's written about NFV and the prospect of a telecom app store. (See

    LRTV Documentaries
    Service Provider Panel: Partnering in the Digital Era

    5|22|17   |     |   (0) comments


    Coopetition has always been part of telecom, but the ecosphere now includes data centers, vendors, apps developers, cloud service providers and Internet content providers. This BCE 2017 panel explores the new attitudes among network operators as to the value and variety of ...
    LRTV Interviews
    Site Demo: AT&T's IoT Flow Platform

    5|19|17   |   04:25   |   (0) comments


    At AT&T's R&D center in Tel Aviv, Israel, project leader Eyal Segev talks about the operator's Flow platform and how it helps to prototype IoT applications.
    LRTV Documentaries
    Agent of Change: A Q&A With AT&T's John Donovan

    5|18|17   |     |   (0) comments


    Carol Wilson talks with the man leading AT&T's transformation efforts about the challenge of change.
    LRTV Documentaries
    BCE Service Provider Panel: The New Business Realities

    5|18|17   |     |   (0) comments


    For virtualization to happen, the telecom industry first has to grapple with key functional aspects of SDN and NFV that need to be universal, such as onboarding of virtualized network functions and federation of software-defined networks.
    LRTV Interviews
    BCE Service Provider Keynote: CenturyLink

    5|16|17   |   22:32   |   (0) comments


    Aamir Hussain leads the Product Development and Technology organization at CenturyLink, which includes the company's information technology function. He is an experienced senior technology executive with more than 25 years of proven success in the implementation of global technology operations, operationalization of complex technology, infrastructures and business ...
    Infographics
    With the mobile ecosystem becoming increasingly vulnerable to security threats, AdaptiveMobile has laid out some of the key considerations for the wireless community.
    Hot Topics
    Cities Clamor for More Clout at FCC
    Mari Silbey, Senior Editor, Cable/Video, 5/23/2017
    What's Blocking 4K TV Today
    Alan Breznick, Cable/Video Practice Leader, Light Reading, 5/22/2017
    Sonus & Genband Finally Combine to Form $745M Company
    Dan Jones, Mobile Editor, 5/23/2017
    Fright Wigs & Cocktails: BCE 2017 in Pics
    Mitch Wagner, Editor, Enterprise Cloud, 5/19/2017
    Apple Looking to Cook 5G Test Devices
    Dan Jones, Mobile Editor, 5/24/2017
    Like Us on Facebook
    Twitter Feed
    BETWEEN THE CEOs - Executive Interviews
    One of the nice bits of my job (other than the teeny tiny salary, obviously) is that I get to pick and choose who I interview for this slot on the Light Reading home ...
    TEOCO Founder and CEO Atul Jain talks to Light Reading Founder and CEO Steve Saunders about the challenges around cost control and service monetization in the mobile and IoT sectors.
    Animals with Phones
    What Brogrammers Look Like to the Rest of Us Click Here
    Live Digital Audio

    Playing it safe can only get you so far. Sometimes the biggest bets have the biggest payouts, and that is true in your career as well. For this radio show, Caroline Chan, general manager of the 5G Infrastructure Division of the Network Platform Group at Intel, will share her own personal story of how she successfully took big bets to build a successful career, as well as offer advice on how you can do the same. We’ll cover everything from how to overcome fear and manage risk, how to be prepared for where technology is going in the future and how to structure your career in a way to ensure you keep progressing. Chan, a seasoned telecom veteran and effective risk taker herself, will also leave plenty of time to answer all your questions live on the air.