AT&T Inc.(NYSE:T) has decided to table the discussion about making a deal to buyout Vodafone. When AT&T was asked by Britain’s takeover regulators to clarify their position, AT&T said that they did not intend to make a bid. This means that AT&T cannot make an offer for at least 6 months unless Vodafone invites AT&T to make a bid.
AT&T was not ready to make an offer. Matters became more complicated by the discovery of a mass spying program by the U.S. National Security Agency (NSA). Another reason why AT&T was deterred to make a bid is because of a surge in Vodafone’s share price amidst the U.S. sale talks. AT&T would also have to persuade their shareholders. Many shareholders questioned the entrance into European markets where there is intense competition and unpredictable regulation.
The advantage of waiting six months for AT&T is that Vodafone would be able to complete the $130 billion sale of their stake in Verizon Wireless. This gives investors time to decide on a value of what remains of Vodafone.
Vodafone also recently agreed to acquire Kabel Deutschland and Spanish cable operator Ono.