Feeds

Could Vodafone nab 3 UK after T-Orange merger?

Hutchison 'looking for options'

Website security in corporate America

With the merger of Orange UK and T-Mobile UK approved by the European Union, the current UK leaders, O2 and Vodafone, will be mulling their competitive responses. So far, Vodafone has mainly focused on revamping its software brands and its higher-value services, but it could also move to acquire the country's smallest cellco, 3 UK, say analysts.

Shaun Collins of CCS Insight commented in an interview with Mobile Europe: "Firstly such a deal would be competitively appropriate, and secondly Hutchison has been looking for options for 3 UK. It would be inconceivable if the two had not talked about 3 UK being acquired. After all Vodafone and 3 merged their businesses in Australia so there is a track record and the channels for communication are there."

However, some think O2 and Vodafone will be in more serious talks - not about merger, which would be blocked by antitrust authorities, but in a more wide-ranging deal to share networks. They already have a partial collaboration and a full merger of their RANs would create a two-network market in the UK, since 3 already shares with T-Mobile (although one condition of the merger with Orange is a review of this agreement and how it affects competition).

Meanwhile, insiders claim that the joint venture could cut up to 2,000 staff as it pursues cost efficiencies, with the focus on the back office. The firms cannot comment until they are fully merged, but Tom Alexander, head of Orange UK and CEO-designate of the combined company, confirmed that the new firm will start to trade as a single entity early next month, and will then outline a cost saving plan. Between them, the two operators have about 19,000 staff - Orange, based in the southwestern city of Bristol, has 12,500 while T-Mobile, headquartered north of London, has 6,500.

Copyright © 2010, Wireless Watch

Wireless Watch is published by Rethink Research, a London-based IT publishing and consulting firm. This weekly newsletter delivers in-depth analysis and market research of mobile and wireless for business. Subscription details are here.

Internet Security Threat Report 2014

More from The Register

next story
Brit telcos warn Scots that voting Yes could lead to HEFTY bills
BT and Co: Independence vote likely to mean 'increased costs'
Phones 4u slips into administration after EE cuts ties with Brit mobe retailer
More than 5,500 jobs could be axed if rescue mission fails
ISPs' post-net-neutrality world is built on 'bribes' says Tim Berners-Lee
Father of the worldwide web is extremely peeved over pay-per-packet-type plans
New 'Cosmos' browser surfs the net by TXT alone
No data plan? No WiFi? No worries ... except sluggish download speed
Radio hams can encrypt, in emergencies, says Ofcom
Consultation promises new spectrum and hints at relaxed licence conditions
Turnbull: NBN won't turn your town into Silicon Valley
'People have been brainwashed to believe that their world will be changed forever if they get FTTP'
Google+ GOING, GOING ... ? Newbie Gmailers no longer forced into mandatory ID slurp
Mountain View distances itself from lame 'network thingy'
Blockbuster book lays out the first 20 years of the Smartphone Wars
Symbian's David Wood bares all. Not for the faint hearted
prev story

Whitepapers

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops
Balancing user privacy and privileged access, in accordance with compliance frameworks and legislation. Evaluating any potential remote control choice.
WIN a very cool portable ZX Spectrum
Win a one-off portable Spectrum built by legendary hardware hacker Ben Heck
Storage capacity and performance optimization at Mizuno USA
Mizuno USA turn to Tegile storage technology to solve both their SAN and backup issues.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?
The next step in data security
With recent increased privacy concerns and computers becoming more powerful, the chance of hackers being able to crack smaller-sized RSA keys increases.