BT this week made further progress in its bid to buy mobile operator EE for £12.5 billion (€16.8 billion/$19 billion), raising £1 billion in a share placing on Thursday to help fund the deal.
BT has agreed to definitive terms to buy mobile operator EE from existing owners Orange and Deutsche Telekom for £12.5 billion (€16.7 billion/$19 billion), bringing to an end the first phase of a process that is set to turn the former UK incumbent into the market's biggest converged provider of fixed and mobile telecoms services.
TalkTalk was quick to praise the success of its new quad-play strategy after reporting year-on-year revenue growth of 4.2 per cent in its financial third quarter (calendar Q4), but the UK-based operator also indicated that the cost of acquiring new subscribers for combinations of its mobile, broadband and TV products would hit earnings in the full year.
Quad-play or multi-play strategies got another airing this week, as one operator hailed its success in bundling fixed, mobile and TV services together and another raised doubts again over the appetite that consumers are likely to have for such service bundles.
BSkyB became the latest provider of TV and fixed broadband services to throw its hat into the mobile ring in what is regarded as a largely defensive move, after the satellite company signed a wholesale agreement to use the network of Telefónica (O2) UK.
Hutchison Whampoa faces a fight in its bid to acquire the UK mobile assets of Spanish incumbent Telefónica, with reports stating TalkTalk and BSkyB (Sky) are also circling O2 UK.
Telefónica may have been offered a lifeline regarding its UK mobile operation by rival Three UK's parent company Hutchison Whampoa, as the Hong Kong-based company seeks to expand its European business.
TalkTalk has set a goal to offer 1 Gbps fiber-to-the-premises (FTTP) services to 50-60 percent of UK homes and business premises via its partnership with CityFibre and Sky, a move that will enable it to lessen its dependency on BT's Openreach last mile network.
BT's announcement this week that it has entered into exclusive negotiations with Deutsche Telekom and Orange over a potential acquisition of EE was generally given the thumbs up by analysts and industry players, although one question now being asked is what a successful deal might mean for rival mobile operator O2 UK and its parent company Telefónica.
Ofcom said Sharon White has been appointed as the new CEO of the UK communications regulator with effect from late March 2015, confirming previous reports.