updated 11:57 am EDT, Tue September 3, 2013
Lowell McAdam speaks following Vodafone announcement
Verizon Wireless has reportedly left open the possibility of international expansion, though the company is no longer considering a foray into the Canadian market, according to CEO Lowell McAdam's comments during a Tuesday conference call with analysts. The company's $130 billion commitment to buy Vodafone's 45-percent stake has raised questions regarding potential expansion and other investments.
Analysts reportedly voiced concerns that Verizon would be forced to scale back its participation in spectrum auctions after it incurs $60 billion in debt to pay Vodafone. McAdam played down the doubts, noting that the company still plans to take part in the auctions.
Executives suggested the carrier is planning to pay off the debt "as quickly as possible," with the goal of securing an investment-grade credit rating within four to five years, as quoted by Reuters.
The company earlier this year was believed to be willing to pay more than $1.2 billion in total for Canadian carriers Wind Mobile and Mobilicity, though later reports suggested the strategy had changed to possible direct bidding in a Canadian spectrum auction. The larger Canadian carriers vehemently opposed any potential encroachment from a US carrier, however, and organized a massive ad campaign to drum up public opposition to the deals.
"Verizon is not going to Canada," McAdam told Bloomberg. "It has nothing to do with the Vodafone deal, it has to do with our view of what kind of value we could get for shareholders."