Verizon Wireless to pass on expansion to Canada after Vodafone deal

Verizon WirelessVerizon Wireless’ parent company today spent about US$130 billion to buy back Vodafone’s 45% stake in the U.S. carrier. Hours after the monumental deal, Verizon Wireless CEO Lowell McAdam put to rest any discussions about the carrier expanding to Canada by possibly acquiring WIND Mobile or Mobilicity. “Verizon is not going to Canada,” he said in a telephone interview, adding that the story had been”way overblown.”

The story that Verizon Wireless might be coming to Canada dominated the Canadian wireless industry this summer. Rumours swirled that Verizon could buy out either WIND Mobile (with an opening offer of US$700 million) or Mobilicity or even both. The news was not welcomed by Canada’s incumbent carriers (Bell Mobility, Rogers Wireless and TELUS Mobility) who launched a major public relations campaign. Even the CWTA (Canadian Wirless Telecommunications Association) got into the action. The Canadian government shot back, reconfirming that the upcoming 700MHz auction rules would not change and launching its own website (called MoreChoices) to respond to the big three’s campaign.

Then news broke that Verizon was delaying its move to Canada. Today, that delay appears to have become a full-on stop. Will the decision push WIND Mobile and Mobilicity to merge? Verizon may be out but the saga may not be quite over…

Let us know below if you’re disappointed by this turn of events.

Source : Bloomberg