Softbank’s move prompts DoCoMo to get the M&A habit

26 Feb 2013

Kaoru Kato as saying that following rival Softbank Corp’s move to acquire a majority stake in US operator Sprint Nextel, his company is ready to return to investing in phone companies outside Asia. Speaking on the sidelines of the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona yesterday, Kato confirmed that DoCoMo was astonished by Softbank’s acquisition plan, adding: ‘I hope this will lead to success for the US market and for Softbank as well, but the hurdle will be very high’. The official went on to say that his company is seeking additional revenue streams from health and retail services, but noted that while he has focused recent efforts on purchasing content and platform providers, making acquisitions in the mobile industry may be worthwhile as the sector ‘is characterised by constant growth’. Kato’s company acquired Buongiorno, an Italian mobile-content provider, for about USD340 million in 2012, but says that going forward ‘we will constantly monitor the trends, and if there is anything good, we may make an investment’.