This paper investigates how market participants react to mergers and acquisitions (M&As) involving telecommunications companies. The empirical evidence suggests that such activities convey bad news to the market. This is consistent with the synergy trap hypothesis and extant empirical findings of value-reducing diversification strategies in recent literature. The evidence also indicates that a cross-border, rather than a domestic M&A deal, is the main driver of the negative market reaction. Further, our evidence of negative impacts on the bidder's business after an M&A reinforces our main finding that market participants, on average, perceive M&A activities to be detrimental to shareholder value. This suggests that value creation or synergy through an M&A deal is not warranted even though it can generate an increase in size of the firm.