It seems that AT&T is no longer content with sticking to only the U.S. market. According to a new report from the Wall Street Journal, AT&T may be looking to expand outside of the United States and into Europe.
The publication claims that people familiar with AT&T say that the carrier is considering the move in order to “best escape constraints on growth at home by getting into a new wireless market where it can upgrade technology and roll out more lucrative pricing strategies”.
The bottom-line is that AT&T has just a few U.S. competitors and has limited room to grow at home. They attempted to push forward in 2011 by buying out T-Mobile, but as we all know things ended in failure after the merger was essentially shot down by Department of Justice.
In contrast, the European market has more than a 100 carriers across the EU, and twenty-seven national telecom regulators. This leaves AT&T with plenty of potential growth room. The move is also very risky, with Europe being a highly competitive market that could prove very hard to break into for AT&T.
So when could such push be coming?
At the moment, AT&T is simply shopping around and studying targets that it could potentially buy or merge with in order to make the expansion effort happen.
The Journal indicates that AT&T is specifically interested in European markets such as Germany, the Netherlands or the UK. Supposedly, AT&T even has its eyes on a few different carriers including Netherlands-based Royal KPN and UK-based Everything Everywhere (which is a joint venture of Deutsche Telekon and France Telecom).
If they do intend to go beyond shopping, the Journal suggests that a deal with a European carrier could in fact come before the end of the year.
What do you think, is expanding into Europe a wise move on AT&T's part or should they stay focused on the U.S. market instead?