The material on this site is for financial institutions, professional investors and their professional advisers. It is for information only. Please read our Terms & Conditions, Privacy Policy and Cookies before using this site.

All material subject to strictly enforced copyright laws. © 2021 Euromoney, a part of the Euromoney Institutional Investor PLC.

Ringing up big numbers out east

Europe's largest telecoms operators have a new ambition. Having lost monopolies at home, they now want to build networks that stretch across Europe all the way to Vladivostok. Charles Piggott reports on the telecoms battle for central and eastern Europe.

Deutsche Telekom's 'logical expansion'


A few months ago journalists quizzed Pat Gallagher, president of BT Europe, about the size of British Telecom's war chest for eastern European expansion. They expected an answer in the billions. BT has already invested some €2.4 billion ($2.425 billion) in western Europe. Gallagher's reply was more surprising than a multi-billion dollar figure. He explained that BT had "no investment constraints" at all to get into eastern Europe's fast-growing telecom market. "BT will invest whatever it takes," he told the press after the launch of a major investment push into new markets in the east. Analysts speculate that BT's war chest for central and eastern Europe may top £3 billion ($4.8 billion).


BT is not alone in its ambitions, rather it's the latest contestant in a battle that began several years ago. Deutsche Telekom has been aggressively expanding into eastern Europe for more than five years and already has a considerable head start on many of its western rivals. It has built up stakes in Hungary's Matav, Croatia's Hrvatska Telekom, Austria's max.mobil and Poland's PTC and has other ventures in the Czech Republic, Russia and the Ukraine.



You have reached premium content. Please log in to continue reading.

Read beyond the headlines with Euromoney

For over 50 years, our readers have looked to Euromoney to stay informed about the issues that matter in the international banking and financial markets. Find out more about our different levels of access below.

SUBSCRIBE ONLINE TODAY

Unlimited access to Euromoney.com and Asiamoney.com

Expert comment, long reads and in-depth analysis interviews with senior finance professionals

Access the results of our market-leading annual surveys across core financial services

Access the results of our annual awards, including the world-renowned Awards for Excellence

Your print copy of Euromoney magazine delivered monthly

£73.75 per month

Billed Annually

FREE 7 DAY TRIAL

Unlimited access to Euromoney.com and Asiamoney.com, including our top stories, long reads, expert analysis, and the results of our annual surveys and awards

Sign up to any of our newsletters, curated by our editors

LOGIN NOW

Already a user?

We use cookies to provide a personalized site experience.
By continuing to use & browse the site you agree to our Privacy Policy.
I agree