T-Mobile getting out of blighty?
And then there'd be four
The Financial Times is reporting that Deutsche Telekom, owner of T-Mobile, is under pressure to get out of the UK following disappointing financials.
Former-monopoly Deutsche Telekom's two largest shareholders - the German government and private-equity group Blackstone, are both reportedly keen to see T-Mobile leave the UK and focus more on the US market. They have been holding back in the hope that the value would increase, but that's unlikely to happen given the way T-Mobile UK dragged Deutsche Telekom into a profit warning 10 days ago.
Selling T-Mobile's UK operation wouldn't be easy, the UK market is well served and there are no obvious buyers. A merger with one of the existing operators would make more sense, with 3 being the obvious choice - the company is already in the process of merging radio networks and lacks a 2G network of its own, but whether it has the cash to take on T-Mobile is another matter entirely.
The FT quotes the omniscient "person familiar with the shareholders", claiming that both the German government and Blackstone want a quick decision on the UK - in the shape of a radical fix or a plan for disposal, either of which would shake up the UK mobile business. ®