Thursday, December 14, 2006
I've been quietly wondering over the past year or so how long it might be before Chinese carriers, with their remarkably strong balance sheets, began to look West in search of acquisitions. I had mainly believed that their eyes would be firmly on emerging markets, as seemingly confirmed by China Mobile's reported interest in Millicom, but I never ruled out the idea that they might have a pop at a target in a developed market - if only as a signal of their growing economic importance. If mega-uber value cyberfreund Guy Kewney is right, we may see this as soon as tomorrow. Beyond whatever political machinations may be involved here, I'm genuinely curious to see how dynamics in the UK market change with an ambitious and financially strong fifth player in the market, looking to show just what it can do.