As the wireless market continues to slow thanks to smaller companies popping up in an already crowded market, many industry experts feel like Verizon needs to make a clear move away from mobile phones – perhaps with a big merger or acquisition.
But CEO Lowell McAdam doesn’t see it that way. At a meeting of media industry experts, he was asked about Verizon‘s future plans. His response was, “We don’t feel the urgency that seems to be out there in the analyst community,” he said, among “the banking community and the media.”
Verizon did recently purchase Yahoo for nearly $5.5 billion, but many industry people feel like that’s not enough. They need to make a more transformative move, people feel, one that diversifies away from the wireless industry.
Verizon is currently the top wireless carrier in the country, but they just posted their first ever quarterly loss in subscribers who pay a monthly bill (by far their most valuable customer).
The company’s main competitor, AT&T, seems to be heeding expert advice, as they’re planning an $85 billion purchase of Time Warner, including control of cable television channels like HBO.
At one time, Charter Communications was tabbed as a potential target, but an agreement announced Monday between Charter and cable provider Comcast would kill a Verizon/Charter merge.
That agreement, which should cut costs overall and hasten Charter’s entry into the wireless market, also nixes Comcast and Charter from entering into an agreement without the other’s consent for one year (preventing either company from finding a wireless carrier on their own).
Speaking with analysts, McAdam said that agreement doesn’t necessarily change any relationships with Verizon. Both companies will have wireless services using Verizon’s airwaves. “Frankly, we encouraged them to work together because dealing with one customer is a lot better than dealing with multiple customers.”
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