VOIP services

Euronews: Vodafone Eyes M&A Opportunity

Vodafone Group plc (NYSE: VOD), Cable & Wireless Worldwide plc (London: CW), Cable & Wireless Communications , Orange (NYSE: FTE) and Amino Technologies plc (London: AMO) get the week off to a thrilling start.

  • Following weekend press speculation, Vodafone has confirmed it is in the "very early stages of evaluating the merits of a potential offer" for Cable & Wireless Worldwide (C&WW), which provides voice and data services to about 6,000 enterprise users in the U.K. and across the globe. C&WW, which reported revenues of £2.26 billion (US$3.57 billion) in the financial year to March 31, 2011, saw its share price leap by nearly 30 percent early Monday morning on the London Stock Exchange to 25.5 pence, giving it a market valuation of around £687 million ($1.08 billion). Press reports suggest Vodafone may offer £700 million ($1.1 billion) in cash for the operator, which suffered an unsettling 2011 as it considered its M&A options and appointed a new CEO. (See C&W Worldwide Names New CEO, Euronews: C&W Worldwide Mulls Asset Sale and C&W Worldwide Reports Full Year.)

  • Meanwhile, C&W Communications, the retail services player that operates in niche markets such as the Caribbean, Macau, Monaco and Panama, and which demerged from C&WW in March 2010, is having a few operational issues. The operator saw its share price dip by nearly 17 percent Friday to 36.3 pence following an interim trading report that included a full-year earnings warning. (See C&W Comms Provides Update and C&W Does the Splits.)

  • France Telecom has, as anticipated, struck a deal to buy most of the stake held by Orascom Telecom Media and Technology Holding in Egyptian operator Mobinil . Once the deal is completed, France Telecom will hold a 95 percent stake in Mobinil.

  • British set-top box vendor Amino has reported an 18 percent increase in revenues to £51.8 million ($81.9 million) for the financial year ending November 2011, while its EBITDA (earnings before interest, tax and other costs) grew significantly to £4.4 million ($7 million). The company's share price gained 5.6 percent to 52 pence in early Monday trading on the London Stock Exchange.

  • Tele2 Russia, the fourth-largest mobile operator in Putin-land, has asked Ceragon Networks Ltd. (Nasdaq: CRNT) to upgrade its backhaul networks, rendering them ready for Long Term Evolution (LTE) in the process. Ceragon will provide wireless backhaul to Tele2 in 15 of the 37 regions in Russia covered by the operator. (See Tele2 Russia Backhauls With Ceragon.)

    — Paul Rainford, Assistant Editor, Europe, Light Reading

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