Nice attention from The Deal today. I should mention that when it comes to Vodafone I'm not necessarily partial; I spent several months dealing with them very closely when we were auctioning off AT&T Wireless. I came away from that process deeply impressed with Vodafone's operating efficiency. They just seemed to do everything well, even down to how they conducted diligence and negotiated the merger agreement. And you never saw a more starry-eyed group of swooning senior executives than our folks after the presentations Vodafone made to us for reverse diligence. I sometimes think I might have lost some respect for them had they paid as much for AWE as Cingular did! So - besides the lack of compelling business logic, I also have a more gut-level negative reaction to the prospect of Vodafone being taken apart by Verizon-Telefonica-Blackstone trifecta.
That sale, by the way, was quite the drama. Amir Mirza, a banker at Merrill Lynch (and a helluva guy) has always told me I should write a book about the experience. Now that I've got more than one year's distance from Cingular, I think I may do something like that and serialize the story here. Look for postings titled "The Sale of AT&T Wireless".