Friday, March 03, 2006

Consolidate this

The focus shifts to BT. We've been there before, but maybe what's different this time is that the company has de-leveraged hugely, the company is structurally more suited to a breakup, and the Chairman and CEO are sitting on a successful turnaround story. I could certainly see a case for exiting on a high note. My Dutch sources suggest that Mr. Verwaayen has political aspirations back in his home country, where he seems to have been gaining a profile. Elsewhere, there's an intriguing report out of Italy, which I haven't seen reported in English anywhere yet, where the CEO of Mediaset seems to be playing down the idea that his company and Telecom Italia might make a good fit. I particularly find this interesting following comments two days back by Liberty Global CEO Mike Fries that his company might be interested in Fastweb. Very intriguing to ponder, not least because of the personalities involved.

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