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AT&T Snubs Future With DISH, Looks to Europe

**Editor’s Note: Please click here for a recap of the biggest communications mergers of Q2 2013.**

Randall Stephenson, chief executive of AT&T, has all but told investors that the mobile giant won’t pursue an acquisition of DISH Network.

Stephenson did, however, hint at expanding to Europe during a presentation to investors on Tuesday. He suggested that AT&T will pursue buying Vodafone assets in Europe once the U.K-based carrier’s deal to sell its stake in Verizon Wireless closes, according to The Wall Street Journal.

If AT&T does expand into Europe, the company would use the same business model that it has been using in the United States higher data usage and pricing models.

With European economies still struggling and the telecom market being highly competitive, AT&T would need to significantly invest in network improvement, the WSJ noted. This may be a problem, however, as European regulations regarding how long a company controls wireless spectrum can discourage investments.

Stephenson acknowledged that AT&T’s failed takeover of T-Mobile two years ago set the table for the company’s potential future in Europe. The U.S. government has made it clear that it wants four competitive carriers, he said.

DISH Network has been trying to become a player in the wireless space, but its pursuit to buy Clearwire and Sprint came up empty earlier this year.


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