Quentin's Feed
May 21, 2013

Breakingviews:Vodafone’s drab results are a sideshow

(The author is a Reuters Breakingviews columnist. The opinions
expressed are his own.)

By Quentin Webb

LONDON, May 21 (Reuters Breakingviews) – Vodafone’s (VOD.L: Quote, Profile, Research)
predictably drab results are something of a sideshow. The key
question for investors remains whether Chief Executive Vittorio
Colao can agree a good deal for partner Verizon Communications
(VZ.N: Quote, Profile, Research) to buy Vodafone out of the duo’s U.S. joint venture.

Apr 25, 2013
via Breakingviews

Pressure builds on Vodafone to make U.S. exit

Photo

By Quentin Webb

The authors are Reuters Breakingviews columnists. The opinions expressed are their own.

Pressure is building on Vodafone to make a U.S. exit. The latest in a string of deal stories says partner Verizon Communications has hired advisers for a potential buyout of the duo’s mobile joint venture, Verizon Wireless.

Apr 22, 2013
via Breakingviews

ABB takes a shine to solar

Photo

By Quentin Webb

The author is a Reuters Breakingviews columnist. The opinions expressed are his own.

ABB’s contrarian push into solar energy looks smart. The Swiss group is buying Nasdaq-listed Power-One for $1 billion in cash – a fully priced deal, given the solar industry’s current financial misery. But ABB insists Power-One occupies a sweet spot. That sounds plausible, and long term, the deal should add up.

Apr 15, 2013
via Breakingviews

CVC takes opportunistic tilt at Betfair

Photo

By Quentin Webb

The author is a Reuters Breakingviews columnist. The opinions expressed are his own.

CVC is taking an opportunistic tilt at Betfair. The buyout giant’s admission that it may make a bid for the UK gambling outfit follows Betfair’s terrible run since flotation. But CVC could struggle to persuade investors to fold their hands at this stage.

Apr 9, 2013
via Breakingviews

Satellite IPO launches risk tolerance into orbit

Photo

By Quentin Webb

The author is a Reuters Breakingviews columnist. The opinions expressed are his own.

Intelsat’s initial public offering could be a telling launch for stock markets. The owners want a full valuation despite the satellite operator’s slow growth and stratospheric debt. If investors are ready to buy, it suggests risk tolerance is heading sky-high.

Apr 4, 2013
via Breakingviews

Deal prospects make Vodafone look cheap

Photo

By Quentin Webb and Robert Cyran
The authors are Reuters Breakingviews columnists. The opinions expressed are their own.

Deal prospects make Vodafone look cheap. An optimistic reading of the underlying valuations suggests M&A could deliver shareholders in the London-listed mobile giant perhaps 35 percent more value than they have now. That’s an extra 31.5 billion pounds ($47.6 billion). But unlocking this would entail huge deals and huge headaches to match.

Apr 3, 2013
via Breakingviews

Tele2′s Russia retreat may spur mobile competition

Photo

By Quentin Webb

The author is a Reuters Breakingviews columnist. The opinions expressed are his own.

Tele2 is making a decent Russian exit, all considered. The Swedish telecom is selling its unit there for $3.55 billion to state-backed VTB. Attempts to gatecrash the Kremlin-blessed deal look forlorn. And life may get harder for Tele2’s bigger rivals.

Mar 22, 2013
via Breakingviews

Maybe “Gucci” didn’t work. But “Kering”: really?

Photo

By Quentin Webb

The author is a Reuters Breakingviews columnist. The opinions expressed are his own.

It sounds like caring, there’s a hint of Breton, and it comes with an owl. PPR is becoming “Kering”. Renaming the parent company will hardly deter buyers of the French group’s illustrious brands, such as Gucci or Bottega Veneta. But this latest corporate offence against language hints at worrying groupthink within PPR – sorry, Kering – HQ.

Mar 21, 2013

Breakingviews-Forget a flood of telco deals after EU thaw

(The author is a Reuters Breakingviews columnist. The opinions
expressed are his own.)

By Quentin Webb

LONDON, March 21 (Reuters Breakingviews) – Europe’s telecoms
firms are finally getting Brussels to ease up. It’s an exciting
moment for this fragmented sector, which bankers have long hoped
would generate a wave of M&A. But the European Union should not
give too much ground.

Mar 13, 2013

Breakingviews-Moleskine turns over new leaf with ambitious IPO

(The author is a Reuters Breakingviews columnist. The opinions
expressed are his own)

By Quentin Webb

LONDON, March 13 (Reuters Breakingviews) – Moleskine is
opening a new chapter in the annals of aggressive flotations.
The maker of sleek black notebooks is seeking an initial public
offering in Milan. The “equity story” is based on strong
branding, growth and margins. Investors must now choose whether
they want to go along with another tale of consumer infatuation.

    • About Quentin

      "Quentin Webb is a Reuters Breakingviews columnist, covering mergers and acquisitions, corporate finance and private equity. He is based in London. Before becoming a columnist, he was a news reporter for Reuters, where he was most recently European M&A correspondent. He has also worked as a correspondent in Brussels and as a credit-markets reporter. He joined Reuters in 2003 from Legalease, a legal publisher. He has a first-class degree in psychology from University College London."
    • Follow Quentin