updated 11:40 am EDT, Fri July 3, 2009
T-Mo UK Swap Deal Rumor
Rather than allow a buyout of its assets, T-Mobile UK is hoping to strike a deal that would let it "swap" its British business for one in another country, sources have said on Friday. Company insiders have tipped off FT that T-Mobile may sell off its UK operations and that Vodafone Turkey would be the "ideal" candidate for the deal due to its second-place rank and relative subscriber base. No talks have been mentioned so far.
It's also uncertain whether Vodafone UK would want the swap. Acquiring T-Mobile UK's business would give it an extra 15 percent of the market and give it a clear lead over O2, but it would also sacrifice an important region for the privilege. A move of the sort would equally force Vodafone to concede important handset deals like its access to the iPhone in Turkey.
None of the involved companies have commented on the reports.