Telecom & Mergers

Mergers

The Bulgarian Competition Authority opens an in-depth investigation into a telecommunications company’s proposed acquisition of a rival (Telnet / Bulgarian Telecommunications Company)
Bulgarian Commission for the Protection of Competition (Sofia)
The CPC opens in-depth investigation into “BTC” EAD’s proposed acquisition of Telnet OOD* By Decision No744/06.10.2022, the Commission on Protection of Competition (CPC, the Commission) has opened an in-depth investigation to assess the proposed acquisition of sole control over "Telnet" OOD by (...)

The EU Court of Justice AG Kokott supports setting aside the General Court’s ruling, overturning the prohibition order of a merger between telecoms companies (Telefónica UK / Hutchison 3G UK)
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
On 20 October 2022, Advocate General Kokott issued an opinion that the General Court (“GC”) had erred in its ruling in the C.K. Telecoms case by misstating the correct legal test to prohibit an oligopolistic merger and for engaging in an overly broad legal review of the Commission’s decision. AG (...)

The EU Court of Justice AG Kokott issues an opinion on the General Court’s judgment overturning the Commission’s prohibition of a merger between two UK telecoms companies (Telefónica UK / Hutchison 3G UK)
Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton (Brussels)
Non-binding opinion finds that General Court erred in applying heightened standard of proof to cases involving unilateral effects in oligopolistic markets. The Case and the Opinion On October 20, Advocate General Kokott issued her opinion on the European Commission’s appeal to the Court of (...)

The EU Court of Justice AG Kokott advises the Court to uphold the Commission’s appeal on the grounds that the General Court erroneously applied a stricter burden of proof for the SIEC test and erred in law by misinterpreting the concept of a SIEC (Telefónica UK / Hutchison 3G UK)
Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton (Brussels)
Advocate General Sides with Commission in its Appeal of General Court’s Overturning of Three/O2 Prohibition* Non-binding opinion finds that General Court erred in applying heightened standard of proof to cases involving unilateral effects in oligopolistic markets. The Case and the Opinion On (...)

The EU Court of Justice AG Kokott clarifies the standards of proof for the existence of non-coordinated effects satisfying the concept of ‘significant impediment to effective competition’ on an oligopolistic market where the merged entity does not have a dominant position (Telefónica UK / Hutchison 3G UK)
European Court of Justice (Luxembourg)
Merger control: Advocate General Kokott clarifies the standards of proof of the existence of non-coordinated effects satisfying the concept of ‘significant impediment to effective competition’ on an oligopolistic market where the merged entity does not have a dominant position* The scope of the (...)

The EU Court of Justice AG Kokott concludes that a merger may be assessed ex post under Article 102 TFEU provided the transaction was not assessed ex ante with traditional merger control tools (Towercast)
European Court of Justice (Luxembourg)
According to Advocate General Kokott, a concentration between undertakings that has not been the subject of any ex ante assessment under merger control law may be assessed ex post on the basis of the prohibition of abuse of a dominant position under primary law* However, if a concentration has (...)

The EU Court of Justice AG Kokott endorses the application of Article 102 TFEU to the acquisitions of nascent firms by dominant players in high technology sectors (Towercast)
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
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Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
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Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
AG Kokott Supports Application of Article 102 TFEU to Acquisitions of Small Promising Firms in Life Sciences and Other High Technology Sectors In a non-binding opinion given to the Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU) Advocate General Kokott yesterday expressed the view that (...)

The EU Court of Justice AG Kokott proposes that non-reportable transactions could be caught by abuse of dominance rules (Towercast)
White & Case (Brussels)
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White & Case (Brussels)
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White & Case (Dusseldorf)
Advocate General Juliane Kokott has proposed that the EU Court of Justice should find that competition authorities have the power to apply Article 102 TFEU to corporate transactions that are not reportable, and test under that provision whether the transaction as such constitutes an abuse of a (...)

The EU Court of Justice AG Kokott supports the use of Article 102 TFEU to assess a merger ex post provided that the transaction was not initially assessed using traditional tools (Towercast)
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
On 13 October 2022, Advocate General Kokott issued a non-binding opinion to the Court of Justice of the European Union (“ECJ”) in the Towercast preliminary ruling request, expressing the view that concentrations that are not notifiable ex-ante under the EU Merger Regulation (“EUMR”) or national (...)

The UK Competition Authority signals concerns over a potential merger worth $7.3B in the satellite communications market (Viasat / Inmarsat)
United Kingdom’s Competition Authority (CMA) (London)
Satellite communication deal raises competition concerns* The CMA has found Viasat’s merger with Inmarsat could lead to airlines facing higher prices for on-board wifi. Deal could lead to airlines facing higher prices and worse quality on-board wifi Deal would remove key competitor from market (...)

The Icelandic Competition Authority approves the acquisition of the nation’s largest telecommunications company by a French private equity firm subject to conditions (Ardian / Míla)
Icelandic Competition Authority
Merger of Ardian and Míla approved with conditions* The Icelandic Competition Authority (ICA) has completed its investigation into the acquisition of Ardian France of all shares of Míla, a subsidiary of Síminn. Míla operates telecommunications infrastructure nationwide in Iceland and is the (...)

The Australian Competition Authority seeks further views on the acquisition of telecoms infrastructure sites by the country’s biggest telecoms firm (Telstra / TPG Telecom)
Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (Canberra)
ACCC seeks further views on Telstra, TPG mobile network deal* The ACCC has released a statement of preliminary views on the authorisation sought by Telstra and TPG for their proposed regional mobile network arrangements. The ACCC is calling for further submissions and looks forward to hearing (...)

The French Competition Authority fines a multinational telecommunications company €75M for the clearance of penalty payments and non-compliance with injunctions issued in 2017 (Altice)
French Competition Authority (Paris)
Connecting buildings to the fibre optic network (Faber contract): the Autorité fines Altice 75 million euros for the clearance of penalty payments and non-compliance with injunctions issued in 2017* Background For the record, the Autorité de la concurrence had cleared the takeover of SFR by the (...)

The Spanish Competition Authority fines a telecommunications company €5M for breaching commitments that it made whilst acquiring a rival (Telefónica / DTS)
Spanish Competition Authority (CNMC) (Madrid)
The CNMC fines Telefónica 5 million euros for failing to comply with part of the reporting obligations it undertook when it acquired DTS* In 2015, Telefónica voluntarily submitted a number of commitments in order to acquire DTS and preserve competition in the market. Between May 2015 and at least (...)

The French Competition Authority takes note of a decision by a telecommunications company to withdraw its planned acquisition for sole control over a media company (Bouygues / Métropole Télévision group)
French Competition Authority (Paris)
TF1/M6: The Autorité de la concurrence takes note of the decision to withdraw its planned acquisition* The Autorité de la concurrence (hereinafter the "Autorité") takes note of the announcement made today by Bouygues, to withdraw its plan to acquire exclusive control of the Métropole Télévision (...)

The Romanian Competition Commission assesses the takeover of an electronic communications company by a rival (Ines Group / Cloudsys Telecom)
Romanian Competition Council (Bucharest)
The Competition Council assesses the taking over of Ines Group by Cloudsys Telecom* The Competition Council assesses the transaction by which Cloudsys Telecom S.R.L. intends to take over Ines Group S.R.L. Cloudsys Telecom SRL is a provider of electronic communications services, being (...)

The EU Commission opens in-depth investigation into a proposed acquisition of two suppliers of retail fixed and mobile telecommunication services by a large French telecommunications company (VOO / Brutélé / Orange)
European Commission - DG COMP (Brussels)
Mergers: Commission opens in-depth investigation into the proposed acquisition of VOO and Brutélé by Orange* The European Commission has opened an in-depth investigation to assess the proposed acquisition of VOO and Brutélé by Orange under the EU Merger Regulation. The Commission is concerned that (...)

The UK Government clears the acquisition of a national aerospace company by an American motion control technology company subject to commitments to remedy national security concerns (Meggitt / Parker-Hannifin)
United Kingdom’s Competition Authority (CMA) (London)
Update on the proposed acquisition of Meggitt plc by Parker-Hannifin Corporation* Business Secretary Kwasi Kwarteng updates on the proposed acquisition of Meggitt plc by Parker-Hannifin Corporation. Following advice from the Ministry of Defence and the Competition and Markets Authority and (...)

The Romanian Competition Authority approves a transaction by which 3 Belgian companies will be controlled by two telecommunication companies (RCS & RDS / Citymesh)
Romanian Competition Council (Bucharest)
Competition Council approved the transaction by which 3 companies from Belgium will be controlled by RCS & RDS S.A and Citymesh N.V* The Competition Council approved the transaction by which RCS & RDS S.A. and Citymesh N.V. will control together three companies from Belgium: InfraCo (...)

The Spanish Competition Authority initiates disciplinary proceedings against a major telecommunications company for breach of commitments in the acquisition of a mobile operations company (Telefónica / DTS)
Spanish Competition Authority (CNMC) (Madrid)
The CNMC initiates disciplinary proceedings against Telefónica for possible breach of the commitments acquired in the acquisition of DTS* Telefónica has allegedly breached its reporting obligations, thus evading one of the commitments acquired in 2015. It is imperative to verify the effective (...)

The UK Competition Authority calls in an acquisition transaction in the telecommunications sector for national security assessment (BT / Altice)
United Kingdom’s Competition Authority (CMA) (London)
BT acquisition called-in for national security assessment* The acquisition by Altice of 6% of shares in BT has been called-in for a full national security assessment by Business Secretary Kwasi Kwarteng today (Thursday 26 May). The government has powers under the National Security and (...)

The Canadian Competition Authority files court applications to prevent a merger between two telecommunications companies (Rogers / Shaw)
Canadian Competition Bureau (Gatineau)
Competition Bureau seeks full block of Rogers’ proposed acquisition of Shaw* Bureau files court applications to prevent the merger of two of Canada’s largest telecommunications companies The Competition Bureau is seeking to block Rogers proposed $26 billion acquisition of Shaw in an effort to (...)

The French Competition Authority unconditionally clears the purchase of a downstream competitor in the mobile telecommunications market by a major national telecoms and media group (Coriolis / Altice France)
French Competition Authority (Paris)
The Autorité clears the acquisition of Coriolis by Altice France* Altice, a French group active in the telecommunications sector, notified the Autorité de la Concurrence on 18 March 2022 of a plan to acquire Coriolis, also active in this sector. Parties to the transaction Altice France is a (...)

The Rotterdam District Court issues a ruling on an appeal against a merger clearance decision of the competition authority, finding that merger control rules do not aim to protect competitors on the market potentially affected by the establishment of a joint venture (T-Mobile)
Bird & Bird (The Hague)
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Bird & Bird (The Hague)
Summary On 31 March 2022, the Rotterdam District Court ruled on an appeal lodged by T-Mobile Netherlands against a merger clearance decision by the Dutch Authority for Consumers and Markets (ACM) of 12 May 2021 that KPN and APG did not require a licence for the creation of a concentration (the (...)

The UK Competition Authority clears a merger, following an in-depth investigation, between an independent supplier of telecommunications infrastructure and a multinational conglomerate’s passive UK telecoms infrastructure (Cellnex / CK Hutchison)
United Kingdom’s Competition Authority (CMA) (London)
Tower site sale to address concerns in telecoms merger* Cellnex must sell over 1,000 telecoms tower sites to address competition concerns over its purchase of CK Hutchison’s UK towers. The decision by the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) comes after an in-depth Phase 2 investigation (...)

The Italian Competition Authority closes proceedings after accepting commitments related to an acquisition in the wholesale fixed telecommunications markets (FiberCop / TIM / Fastweb / Tiscali / KKR)
Italian Competition Authority (Rome)
ICA: FiberCop gets the green light. The commitments of TIM, Fastweb, Tiscali and KKR submitted after the start of the proceedings have been accepted* The commitments, positively assessed by the Authority, will make it possible to reduce barriers to the acquisition of operators and support (...)

The Portuguese Competition Authority unconditionally clears the merger of 2 telecommunications companies (Cabonitel / Grupo MásMóvil)
Portuguese Competition Authority (Lisbon)
The AdC issued a non-opposition decision to the merger 1/2022 - Grupo MásMóvil / Cabonitel* On February 15, 2022, exercising the powers conferred on it by Article 19 (1) d) of its statutes, approved by Decree-Law 125/2014 of 18 August, the Board of the AdC decided, under Article 50 (1) b) of (...)

The New Zealand Competition Authority receives merger clearance notification for merger between two telecommunication service providers (Vocus / 2degrees)
New Zealand Commerce Commission (Wellington)
Clearance sought for Vocus / 2degrees merger* The Commerce Commission has received an application for clearance in relation to a transaction that would see the merger of the Vocus Group with 2degrees. Vocus and 2degrees are both telecommunications providers that primarily supply retail fixed (...)

The Croatian Competition Authority conditionally clears merger between two vertically-integrated national telecommunications firms stipulating the creation of an additional competing telecom operator (Telemach Hrvatska / OT-Optima Telekom)
Croatian Competition Agency (Zagreb)
CCA clears telecom merger between Telemach Hrvatska and Ot-Optima Telekom* Within the meaning of the Competition Act the Croatian Competition Agency cleared in the first phase the concentration between the undertakings Telemach Hrvatska d.o.o. and OT-Optima Telekom d.d. By this transaction the (...)

The UK Competition Authority provisionally finds in Phase II investigation that the proposed purchase of a multinational conglomerate’s passive UK telecoms infrastructure assets by the largest national independent telecommunications infrastructure supplier would harm competition by removing the possibility for a third infrastructure supplier to emerge (Cellnex / CK Hutchison)
United Kingdom’s Competition Authority (CMA) (London)
UK telecoms tower merger risks higher mobile costs* The CMA has provisionally found  Cellnex’s proposed purchase of CK Hutchison’s telecoms towers would harm competition. Cellnex is an independent supplier of telecommunications infrastructure, currently active across several European countries. (...)

The Spanish Competition Authority approves a merger between a private investment house and a telecommunications operator (Ardian / Adamo)
Spanish Competition Authority (CNMC) (Madrid)
C/1251/21 ARDIAN / ADAMO TELECOM* Ardian acquires the 100% of Adamo. On 14 December 2021, the CNMC authorised Ardian France, S.A. to buy the 100% of Adamo Telecom, S.L.U. Ardian is a private investment house that manages funds on behalf of its clients, mostly pension funds, insurance (...)

The French Competition Authority clears a merger between two telecommunications companies, subject to conditions (Hivory / Cellnex)
French Competition Authority (Paris)
Mobile network infrastructure: the Autorité cleared the acquisition of Hivory by the Cellnex Group, subject to conditions* On 23 August 2021, Cellnex notified its intention to acquire control of Hivory. In a decision dated 25 October 2021, the Autorité clears the transaction subject to (...)

The Lithuanian Competition Authority fines the national telecommunications service provider €215.1K for submitting incorrect and incomplete information which impeded the assessment of a merger’s potential impact on competition (Cgates)
Lithuanian Competition Authority (Vilnius)
CGATES FINED FOR SUBMITTING INCORRECT AND INCOMPLETE INFORMATION IN MERGER REVIEW PROCESS* The Lithuanian competition authority Konkurencijos taryba found that information provided by the Lithuanian telecommunications service provider Cgates, which was necessary for the authority to be able to (...)

The UK Government proposes to accept revised national security undertakings offered under the acquisition of a telecommunications equipment company by a Chinese radio manufacturer to ensure maintenance of the TETRA Airwave Network used by national emergency services (Sepura / Hytera)
United Kingdom’s Competition Authority (CMA) (London)
Acquisition of Sepura plc by Hytera Communications Corporation Limited: revised national security undertakings* Consultation description The Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, Kwasi Kwarteng MP, announced on 28 September 2021 that he is proposing to accept (...)

The Lithuanian Competition Authority clears a merger between two Latvian companies active in the IT and communications services sector (Santa Monica Networks / Latvijas Mobilais Telefons)
Latvian Competition Council (Riga)
Latvian companies receive merger clearance* The Lithuanian competition authority Konkurencijos taryba has cleared the acquisition of 100 per cent of the shares of the Latvian company Santa Monica Networks and indirect control of the Lithuanian company Santa Monica Networks by Latvijas Mobilais (...)

The Higher Regional Court of Düsseldorf overturns the Competition authority’s decision to clear a joint venture between a telecommunications company and a regional utility provider (Telekom Deutschland / EWE)
Herbert Smith Freehills (Dusseldorf)
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Herbert Smith Freehills (Dusseldorf)
Last week the Higher Regional Court of Düsseldorf overturned a decision adopted by the German Federal Cartel Office (FCO) clearing a JV between Telekom Deutschland and EWE, a regional utility company. The JV partners were looking to cooperate in the development of fibre-optic networks in parts (...)

The EU General Court confirms that the Commission was able to fine a telecommunications twice for gun jumping, once for breaching the standstill obligation and once for breaching the failure to notify obligation (Altice)
McDermott Will & Emery (Brussels)
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McDermott Will & Emery (Brussels)
On 22 September 2021, the GCEU upheld a decision from the EC by which it fined telecommunications operator Altice for gun-jumping. In particular, the GCEU affirmed that the EC could impose two separate fines: a fine for implementing a concentration prior to its clearance, and a fine for (...)

The EU General Court dismisses a French telecommunications company’s action against the Commission’s decision to impose two fines totaling €124.5 million in connection to its acquisition of a Portuguese competitor (Altice / PT Portugal)
General Court of the European Union (Luxembourg)
The General Court dismisses Altice Europe’s action against the Commission decision imposing two fines totalling €124.5 million in connection with the acquisition of PT Portugal* However, it orders the amount of the fine relating to the breach of the obligation to notify the concentration to the (...)

The EU General Court upholds the Commission’s decision to fine a telecommunications company for gun jumping but grants a limited 5% reduction of part of the €124.5 million fine imposed (Altice / PT Portugal)
Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom (Brussels)
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Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom (Brussels)
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Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom (Brussels)
On September 22, 2021, the European General Court issued its judgment upholding the decision by the European Commission (Commission) to fine Altice for gun-jumping in the acquisition of Portugal Telecom (PT) in 2015. The General Court did grant Altice a limited 5% reduction of part of the €124.5 (...)

The EU General Court upholds a decision from the Commission sanctioning a telecommunications operator for gun jumping and clarifies in its decision the applicable rules (Altice / PT Portugal)
McDermott Will & Emery (Brussels)
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McDermott Will & Emery (Brussels)
On September 22, 2021, the EU General Court (GC) upheld a decision from the European Commission (Commission) by which it fined telecommunications operator Altice for gun jumping (T-425/18, Altice Europe v Commission). In particular, the GC affirmed that the Commission could impose two separate (...)

The EU General Court issues its judgment upholding the Commission’s decision to fine a telecommunications company for gun jumping (Altice / PT Portugal)
Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom (Brussels)
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Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom (Brussels)
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Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom (Brussels)
On September 22, 2021, the European General Court issued its judgment upholding the decision by the European Commission (Commission) to fine Altice for gun jumping in the acquisition of Portugal Telecom (PT) in 2015. The General Court did grant Altice a limited 5% reduction of part of the €124.5 (...)

The UK Competition Authority prepares a report on the merger between a material manufacturer and a telecommunications company in light of a public interest intervention notice issued over the proposed acquisition (Perpetuus / Taurus)
United Kingdom’s Competition Authority (CMA) (London)
Public interest intervention notice issued over proposed acquisition of The Perpetuus Group by Taurus International Ltd and others* A notice was issued today relating to the proposed acquisition of The Perpetuus Group by Taurus International Ltd and others. On 5 September, acting on official (...)

The Spanish Competition Authority urges a telecommunication company to modify or clarify the terms of its commercial offer that includes the rental of "smartphones" (Telefónica / DTS)
Spanish Competition Authority (CNMC) (Madrid)
The CNMC urges Telefónica to modify or clarify the terms of the Fusión commercial offer that includes the rental of "smartphones" In 2015, the Commission authorised the concentration between Telefónica / DTS subject to a series of commitments related to pay television. Last April, Telefónica (...)

The Spanish Competition Authority urges a national telecommunications company to modify its agreement with a global sports subscription video streaming service to be compatible with the commitments acquired in its takeover of a multichannel audio technologies firm (Telefónica / DTS)
Spanish Competition Authority (CNMC) (Madrid)
The CNMC urges Telefónica to modify its agreement with Dazn to be compatible with the commitments acquired in its take-over of DTS* In 2015, the Commission authorised the Telefónica/DTS take-over subject to a series of commitments related to pay television. The recent agreement between Telefónica (...)

The EU Commission approves an acquisition subject to conditions in the telecommunications sector (Telekom Romania / Orange)
European Commission - DG COMP (Brussels)
The European Commission has approved, under the EU Merger Regulation, the proposed acquisition of Telekom Romania Communications (“TKR”) by Orange SA (“Orange”). The approval is conditional on the divestiture of TKR’s 30% minority shareholding in Telekom Romania Mobile Communications (“TRMC”), which (...)

The Croatian Competition Authority informs the general public of the cessation of a conditionally approved merger between two telecommunication companies (HT / Optima)
Croatian Competition Agency (Zagreb)
HT/Optima conditionally approved concentration ceases 10 July 2021* With respect to the provisions under the Capital Market Act, OG 65/18 and 17/20, relating to making the inside information public and the Regulation (EU) No 596/2014 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 16 April (...)

The UK Competition Authority finds in Phase I investigation that the proposed purchase of a multinational conglomerate’s passive UK telecoms infrastructure assets by the largest national independent telecommunications infrastructure supplier raises competition concerns (Cellnex / CK Hutchison)
United Kingdom’s Competition Authority (CMA) (London)
Cellnex and CK Hutchison deal raises competition concerns* The CMA has found that Cellnex’s proposed purchase of CK Hutchison’s UK passive telecoms infrastructure assets raises competition concerns. Cellnex is an independent supplier of telecommunications infrastructure, currently active across (...)

The Lithuanian Competition Authority refuses to clear the acquisition of sole control of a TV and internet service provider by its competitor despite the commitment offered by the merging parties (Cgates / Splius)
Lithuanian Competition Authority (Vilnius)
CGATES does not get permission to acquire its competitor Splius* The Lithuanian competition authority Konkurencijos taryba refused to clear the acquisition of 100 per cent of the shares and sole control of SPLIUS by Cgates. On 11 December 2020, Konkurencijos taryba received a merger (...)

The Polish Competition Authority approves the acquisition of a telecommunications infrastructure company by its competitor (Cellnex Poland / Polkomtel Infrastruktura)
Polish Competition Authority (Warsaw)
Cellnex Poland with the authorisation of the President of UOKiK to take over Polkomtel Infrastruktura* President of the Office of Competition and Consumer Protection Tomasz Chróstny gave his consent for Cellnex Poland to take control over Polkomtel Infrastruktura. Entrepreneurs own the (...)

The Belgian Competition Authority clears a merger between a telecom provider and a mobile virtual network operator (Proximus / Mobile Vikings)
Bird & Bird (Brussels)
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Bird & Bird (Brussels)
In February 2021, Proximus, Belgium’s incumbent telecom provider, started prenotification talks with the Belgian Competition Authority (BCA) with a view to taking over Mobile Vikings, a mobile virtual network operator (MVNO), which previously formed part of the DPG group. As part of its (...)

The Belgian Competition Authority unconditionally clears the acquisition of mobile telecommunications operator by its competitor (Mobile Vikings / Proximus)
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
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Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
On 31 May 2021, the Competition College (Mededingingscollege / Collège de la concurrence) of the Belgian Competition Authority (Belgische Mededingingsautoriteit / Autorité belge de la Concurrence - BCA) unconditionally cleared the acquisition of mobile telecommunications operator Mobile Vikings (...)

A major telecommunications company resolves to unwind a failed acquisition of a mass media and entertainment conglomerate, notwithstanding rulings greenlighting the merger at both District Court and Appeals Court level (AT&T / Time Warner)
USC Gould School of Law (Los Angeles)
This article has been nominated for the 2022 Antitrust Writing Awards. Click here to learn more about the Antitrust Writing Awards. AT&T’s $102 billion acquisition of Time Warner in 2019 will go down in M&A history as an exceptionally illadvised transaction, resulting in the loss of (...)

The UK Competition Authority provisionally clears merger between two telecommunications companies (Virgin / O2)
United Kingdom’s Competition Authority (CMA) (London)
CMA provisionally clears merger of Virgin and O2* The CMA has provisionally cleared the proposed merger of Virgin Media and Virgin Mobile with O2. Both Virgin and O2 provide certain wholesale services to other mobile network operators in the UK, as well as retail services to consumers. The (...)

The French Competition Authority clears subject to conditions the exclusive control acquisition by a mobile phone operator of a company specialised in mobile telephony services (Bouygues Telecom / Euro Information Telecom)
French Competition Authority (Paris)
The Autorité clears, subject to conditions, the exclusive control acquisition by Bouygues Telecom group of Euro Information Telecom* The Autorité de la concurrence clears, subject to conditions, the exclusive control acquisition by Bouygues Telecom group, of Euro Information Telecom, subsidiary (...)

The UK Competition Authority refers to the proposed merger of two telecommunications companies for a phase 2 investigation (Virgin / O2)
United Kingdom’s Competition Authority (CMA) (London)
Virgin and O2 merger referred for in-depth investigation* The CMA has referred the proposed merger of Virgin Media and Virgin Mobile with O2 for an in-depth Phase 2 investigation The move comes after Virgin and O2 requested that the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) move quickly to the (...)

The German Government prohibits the acquisition of a telecommunication company by a Chinese buyer under the foreign direct investment rules (IMST / Addsino)
Covington & Burling (Brussels)
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Covington & Burling (Frankfurt)
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Covington & Burling (Frankfurt)
On 2 December 2020, the German government prohibited the acquisition of German company IMST GmbH, Kamp-Lintfort (“IMST”) by a Chinese investor. This is the second high profile prohibition decision issued by the German government this year on the grounds of Foreign Direct Investment (“FDI”) rules. (...)

The German Government prohibits the acquisition of a telecommunications company by a Chinese industrial group on the basis of the foreign trade and payments ordinance (IMST / Addsino)
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
On 2 December 2020, the German Government prohibited on public security grounds the sale of the German Institut für Mobil-und Satellitenfunktechnik (“IMST”), a specialist in satellite and communications technologies, to Addsino, a subsidiary of State-owned defence group China Aero- space Science (...)

The German Government prohibits the acquisition of a communications technology company by a Chinese communication product manufacturer (IMST / Addsino)
Hogan Lovells (Brussels)
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Hogan Lovells (Dusseldorf)
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Hogan Lovells (Brussels)
Foreign investment control has become a key factor in M&A deals and 2020 has been an eventful year. A large number of economies have introduced foreign investment control regimes or tightened their existing rules. Now it appears that it is time to make use of them: this week Germany has (...)

The Lithuanian Competition Authority clears with behavioral commitments a telecom’s acquisition of retail broadband and IPTV business of state-owned radio and TV company (Bite Lietuva / Mezon)
Lithuanian Competition Authority (Vilnius)
In November 2020, Lithuanian competition authority has cleared a merger between Bite Lietuva and state-owned business Mezon with behavioural commitments. The merger was approved on the condition that Bite shall not lease or transfer Mezon’s 2.3GHz and 2.6GHz frequencies to its joint (...)

The EU Commission clears several telecommunication undertakings’ acquisition of fibre network operator, subject to conditions (Altice / Allianz / Omer / Covage)
European Commission - DG COMP (Brussels)
Mergers: Commission clears Altice, Allianz and Omers’ joint acquisition of Covage, subject to conditions* The European Commission has approved, under the EU Merger Regulation, the proposed acquisition of Covage by SFR FTTH, a company jointly controlled by Altice, Allianz and Omers. The approval (...)

The EU Commission refers the acquisition of a telecom company back to the UK Competition Authority (Telefónica / Liberty Global)
European Commission - DG COMP (Brussels)
Mergers: Commission refers acquisition of newly created joint venture by Telefónica and Liberty Global to the UK competition authority* The European Commission has referred the proposed acquisition by Telefónica S.A. and Liberty Global PLC of a newly created joint venture to the Consumers and (...)

The UK Competition Authority gets a case referred back by the EU Commission concerning a merger in the telecommunications sector (Telefónica / Liberty Global)
United Kingdom’s Competition Authority (CMA) (London)
European Commission refers review of Virgin and O2 deal to CMA* Following a request from the CMA, the European Commission has referred the proposed merger of Virgin Media and Virgin Mobile with O2 to the CMA for investigation. Following the announcement of the deal on 7 May 2020, the (...)

The Dutch Competition Authority clears a merger in the telecommunications sector (Simpel / T-mobile)
Netherlands Authority for Consumers & Markets (ACM) (The Hague)
ACM clears acquisition of Dutch telecom operator Simpel by rival operator T-Mobile* The Netherlands Authority for Consumers and Markets (ACM) has cleared the acquisition of telecom operator Simpel by rival operator T-Mobile. Over its fixed and mobile networks, T-Mobile offers consumers various (...)

The Croatian Competition Authority informs that the remedy of divesting shares in the national telecom merger has been carried out (Optima / HT)
Croatian Competition Agency (Zagreb)
CCA OFFICIAL STATEMENT REGARDING THE PUBLISHING OF INFORMATION IN THE DIVESTMENT PROCEDURE OF OPTIMA SHARES BY HT* With respect to the queries of third parties, the Croatian Competition Agency (CCA) herewith informs the public that the divestment procedure involving the selling off the shares (...)

The US DoJ conditionally clears a fibre-based telecom merger in Puerto Rico and the US Virgin Islands (Liberty Latin America / AT&T)
US Department of Justice (Washington DC)
Justice Department Requires Divestiture In Order For Liberty Latin America To Acquire AT&T’s Telecommunications Operations In Puerto Rico And The U.S. Virgin Islands* Divestiture Will Preserve Competition for Fiber-Based Telecommunications Services for Enterprise Customers in Puerto Rico (...)

The UK Competition Authority request the EU Commission for a referral to review a proposed merger impacting retail and wholesale telecommunications markets in the UK (Virgin / O2)
United Kingdom’s Competition Authority (CMA) (London)
CMA requests review of Virgin and O2 merger* The CMA has made a request to the European Commission to refer the proposed merger of Virgin Media and Virgin Mobile with O2 to the CMA for investigation. Liberty Global plc (Liberty) owns Virgin Media and Virgin Mobile in the UK, and Telefónica (...)

The EU Court of Justice rules that certain anti-concentration limits set forth by the Italian legislation for the protection of media pluralism are incompatible with the competition law (Vivendi / Mediaset)
Portolano Cavallo (Milan)
Summary: The CJEU has established that the market concentration thresholds set forth by Article 43(11) of Legislative Decree No. 177/05, and based on the overall revenues of the so called “Integrated System of Communications,” are inadequate to detect or prevent the risk for pluralism and thus (...)

The EU Court of Justice rules that a restriction imposed by Italian law on acquisitions in the broadcasting and audiovisual sectors is contrary to EU Law (Vivendi / Mediaset)
Ashurst (Brussels)
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Ashurst (Milan)
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Ashurst (Brussels)
On 3 September 2020, the European Court of Justice ("ECJ") ruled that a restriction imposed by an Italian law on acquisitions in the broadcasting and audiovisual sectors is contrary to the fundamental EU law principle of the freedom of establishment enshrined in Article 49 of the Treaty on the (...)

The US DoJ reaches settlement with new stricter conditions and fines a telecom company’s merger after finding violations of the original conditions (CenturyLink / Level 3 Communications)
US Department of Justice (Washington DC)
Justice Department Brings Enforcement Action Against Centurylink* In Significant Action, CenturyLink Agrees to Extend Term, Appoint Independent Monitor, and Reimburse Taxpayers for the Costs and Fees of the Violations The Department of Justice announced today that CenturyLink, Inc. has agreed (...)

The Spanish Competition Authority agrees to extend for 3 years the remedies agreed as part of the pay-TV merger authorisation in 2015 (Telefónica / DTS)
Spanish Competition Authority (CNMC) (Madrid)
The CNMC agrees to extend for three years the remedies agreed as part of the merger authorisation between Telefónica and DTS in 2015* All the remedies are maintained for the maximum period of three years, save for the one involving the purchase of exclusive broadcast rights in Spain for (...)

The US DoJ congratulates the merger of telecom operator on closing the agreed divestiture with a satellite TV company (T-Mobile / Dish / Boost)
US Department of Justice (Washington DC)
Justice Department Congratulates T-Mobile And Dish For Closing The Boost Divestiture* T-Mobile US Inc. (T-Mobile) and Dish Network Corporation (Dish) announced today that they closed T-Mobile’s divestiture of Boost Network (Boost) to Dish. Boost was legacy Sprint Corporation’s prepaid wireless (...)

The EU General Court annuls the Commission’s prohibition of the merger between two telecommunications companies and clarifies the application of the SIEC test to non-coordinated effects in oligopolistic markets (Hutchison 3G / Telefonica)
Zepos & Yannopoulos (Athens)
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Zepos & Yannopoulos (Athens)
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Zepos & Yannopoulos (Athens)
On 28 May 2020, the EU General Court issued a ruling annulling the European Commission’s decision prohibiting the proposed acquisition of Telefónica UK by Hutchison 3G UK. The Commission had examined this transaction as a “four-to-three” merger and had blocked it in 2016, in line with its generally (...)

The EU General Court annuls the Commission’s decision to block the proposed merger in the UK sector of the mobile telephony market (Telefónica UK / Hutchison 3G UK)
General Court of the European Union (Luxembourg)
The General Court annuls the Commission’s decision to block the proposed acquisition of Telefónica UK by Hutchison 3G UK in the sector of the mobile telephony market* On 11 May 2016, [1] the Commission adopted a decision in which it blocked, under the Merger Regulation, [2] the proposed (...)

The EU General Court overturns the EU Commission’s prohibition of a mobile telecommunications merger (Telefónica UK / Hutchison 3G UK)
Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton (Brussels)
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Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton
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Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton (London)
In a landmark Judgment delivered on May 28, the General Court overturned the European Commission’s 2016 prohibition of the Three/O2 UK mobile telecommunications merger. The Judgment raises the bar for the Commission in respect of (1) the legal standard the Commission must meet; (2) the closeness (...)

The EU General Court annuls the Commission’s decision prohibiting an oligopolistic merger between two mobile network operators in the telecommunication sector on the basis that it did not result in the creation or strengthening of a dominant position (Telefónica UK / Hutchison 3G UK)
Herbert Smith Freehills (London)
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Herbert Smith Freehills (Brussels)
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Herbert Smith Freehills (London)
On 28 May 2020 the General Court handed down its ruling in CK Telecoms UK Investment Ltd v European Commission (Case T-399/16) in which it annulled the EU Commission’s decision which prohibited the proposed acquisition by CK Hutchison Holdings Ltd (Hutchison) of Telefónica Europe plc (O2). The (...)

The EU General Court annuls the Commission’s decision prohibiting the acquisition of two telecommunication companies (Telefónica UK / Hutchison 3G UK)
Government Legal Department (London)
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Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
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Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
1. Summary On 28 May 2020, the EU General Court handed down a ruling annulling the European Commission’s (“Commission”) decision prohibiting the proposed acquisition of Telefónica UK (“O2”) by Hutchison 3G UK (“Three”). The ruling has potentially significant implications for mergers in the telecoms (...)

The EU General Court annuls the Commission’s prohibition of a merger between two of UK’s four mobile network operators after finding errors in the analysis of alleged anticompetitive effects whilst conducting its acquisition review (Telefónica UK / Hutchison 3G UK)
Baker Botts (Brussels)
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Baker Botts (Brussels)
Firm Thought Leadership In what is destined to rank as one of the most significant judicial knockbacks of the European Commission (“Commission”) in the area of merger control for many years, the EU’s General Court (“Court”) has annulled the decision by the Commission in 2016 to prohibit the merger (...)

The EU General Court annuls the Commission’s decision prohibiting a proposed acquisition between two telecom operators with potentially significant implications for the EU merger control policy (Telefónica UK / Hutchison 3G UK)
Court of First Instance of Namur (Namur)
1. SUMMARY On 28 May 2020, the EU’s General Court handed down a ruling annulling the European Commission’s decision prohibiting the proposed acquisition of Telefónica UK (“O2”) by Hutchison 3G UK (“Three”). The ruling has potentially significant implications for mergers in the telecoms sector, as (...)

The Australian Competition Authority blocks a proposed merger between a fixed-line provider and a mobile network operator (TPG / VHA)
Ashurst (Sydney)
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Ashurst (Sydney)
Following an 8 month investigation, on 8 May 2019, the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission ("ACCC") announced its decision to oppose the proposed merger between fixed-line provider TPG Telecom ("TPG") and mobile network operator Vodafone Hutchinson Pty Limited ("VHA"). VHA and TPG (...)

The Kenyan Competition Authority approves a merger, subject to conditions, between two telecommunications companies (Airtel / Telkom)
Mosoti & Company advocates (Kenya)
Kenya’s Competition Tribunal: Airtel/Telkom merger generates first decision* On 4th May 2020, the Kenyan Competition Tribunal made its first decision after considering the application for review of the Airtel-Telkom merger where they contested 7 out of 8 the conditions imposed. The competition (...)

The UK Competition Authority unconditionally clears merger of independent providers of telecommunication infrastructure (Cellnex / Arqiva)
United Kingdom’s Competition Authority (CMA) (London)
Cellnex’s purchase of Arqiva cleared by CMA after thorough review* The CMA has cleared the £2bn merger between Cellnex UK and Arqiva’s telecommunication infrastructure division. Both companies are independent providers of telecommunication infrastructure, including towers, pylons and masts, (...)

The UK Competition Authority unconditionally clears takeover of UK telecom infrastructure by a Spanish telecommunications company making it the largest independent tower company in the UK (Cellnex / Arqiva)
CMS (London)
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CMS (London)
Green light for UK tower consolidation* On 22 April 2020, the UK Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) cleared Cellnex’s acquisition of Arqiva’s UK telecoms infrastructure business. Cellnex, which currently has a small share of the independent supply of communications infrastructure in the UK, (...)

The Indian Competition Authority approves a Big Tech company’s minority investment in a national telecommunications firm (Facebook / JIO Platforms)
Lakshmikumaran & Sridharan (New Delhi)
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Lakshmikumaran & Sridharan (New Delhi)
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Lakshmikumaran & Sridharan (New Delhi)
Jaadhu Holdings LLC (“Jaadhu”), is an indirect wholly owned subsidiary of Facebook Inc. (“Facebook”), incorporated in the state of Delaware, USA.1 Jio Platforms Ltd. (“Jio”), a subsidiary of Reliance Industries Ltd (“RIL”). Jio owns and operates digital applications and holds controlling investments in (...)

The US District Court of Columbia enters the final judgment regarding the merger of the third and fourth-largest telecommunication providers and allows for proposed structural remedies to proceed (T-Mobile / Sprint)
US Department of Justice (Washington DC)
Court Enters Final Judgment in T-Mobile/Sprint Transaction: Order Allows Divestitures to Proceed* Today, a federal district court in Washington, D.C., concluded that the Antitrust Division’s resolution of its challenge to the merger between T-Mobile and Sprint was in the public interest and (...)

The Hungarian Competition Authority reopens investigation into acquisition of digital network operator and issues a new conditional approval (Invitel / DIGI)
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
On 18 March 2020, the Hungarian Competition Authority (“GVH”) conditionally re-approved fixed telecommunications service provider DIGI’s acquisition of its rival Invitel. The GVH had already conditionally cleared the acquisition in May 2018 (see VBB on Competition Law, Volume 2018, No. 5). During (...)

The Hungarian Competition Authority reopens a previously approved acquisition between two telecommunication players on the basis that the parties submitted false and misleading data during the notification and approval procedure (Invitel / GVH)
Bird & Bird (Budapest)
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Bird & Bird (Budapest)
The Hungarian Competition Authority (GVH) finally approved the acquisition of Invitel by DIGI, both significant players on the Hungarian telecoms market. However, with with a complex remedies package as published on 18 March 2020 (Vj/42/2018). As we already reported, the approval of the merger (...)

The Australian Competition Authority decides not to appeal the Federal Court’s decision in a merger which declared that it would not have the effect, or likely effect, of substantially lessening competition in the supply of retail mobile services (TPG / Vodafone)
Bird & Bird (Sydney)
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Bird & Bird (Sydney)
The ACCC has decided not to appeal the Federal Court of Australia’s highly anticipated judgment in the TPG/Vodafone merger in which it declared that the proposed merger between the two parties would not have the effect, or likely effect, of substantially lessening competition in the supply of (...)

The EU Commission unconditionally approves proposed acquisition of joint control in the telecommunications market (Prosegur Alarmas / Telefónica / Prosegur)
European Commission - DG COMP (Brussels)
Mergers: Commission approves acquisition of joint control over Prosegur Alarmas by Telefónica and Prosegur* The European Commission has approved unconditionally, under the EU Merger Regulation, the proposed acquisition of joint control over Prosegur Alarmas by Telefónica and Prosegur. The (...)

The US District Court for the Southern District of New York clears merger between top third and fourth wireless communications providers (State AGs / T-Mobile / Sprint)
Weil, Gotshal & Manges (New York)
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Weil, Gotshal & Manges (Washington)
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Weil, Gotshal & Manges (Washington)
T-Mobile’s Marathon to Acquire Sprint: Five Takeaways from the T-Mobile/Sprint Antitrust Litigation After almost two years of scrutiny by state and federal regulators and an ensuing court battle, T-Mobile US, Inc. (“T-Mobile”) is moving forward with its acquisition of Sprint Corporation (...)

The Australian Federal Court approves a merger between an incumbent and a potential entrant in the retail mobile market (Vodafone / TPG)
RBB Economics (Melbourne)
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RBB Economics (Melbourne)
1.Introduction On 13 February 2020, the Federal Court of Australia (Federal Court) declared that the proposed merger between Vodafone Hutchison Australia (Vodafone) and TPG Telecom (TPG) (Vodafone / TPG) was unlikely to lead to a significant lessening of competition in the Australian retail (...)

The Croatian Competition Authority clears a merger in the pay television transmission services market (Slovenia Broadband / Tele2)
Croatian Competition Agency (Zagreb)
Slovenia Broadband and Tele2 merger approved* In the assessment procedure of the concentration between the undertakings Slovenia Broadband and Tele2 the CCA took into account all relevant facts, the results of the legal and economic analysis and the effects of the vertical concentration on (...)

The Polish Competition Authority conditionally approves a merger in the cable television and internet access market (Multimedia / Vectra)
Bird & Bird (Warsaw)
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Bird & Bird (Warsaw)
In August 2018, Vectra notified UOKiK about its planned acquisition of Multimedia Polska (Multimedia), a competing provider of cable television and Internet access. Following its initial assessment of the planned transaction, UOKiK initiated the second stage of its proceedings in September (...)

The Belgian Competition Authority imposes an interim measure suspending the implementation of a shareholder’s agreement and the radio access network sharing agreement in the telecommunications market (Telenet / Orange Belgium / Proximus)
Belgian Competition Authority (Brussels)
Interim measure imposed on Orange and Proximus in respect of the joint venture for the sharing of the mobile radio access networks* The Competition College of the Belgian Competition Authority (BCA) has at the request of Telenet Group NV and Telenet BVBA (Telenet) imposed on 8 January 2020 an (...)

The Belgian Competition Authority imposes interim measures suspending a joint venture for sharing the mobile radio access networks (Telenet / Orange Belgium / Proximus)
European Commission (Brussels)
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Gómez-Acebo & Pombo (Brussels)
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Basic-Fit (Hoofddorp)
On 22 November 2019, the Belgian companies Orange Belgium, SA/NV and Proximus, SA/NV concluded an agreement to create a joint venture for the sharing of the mobile radio access networks. However, the Telenet Group, SA/NV and Telenet, SPRL/BVBA ( jointly, ‘Telenet’) requested a deeper inquiry (...)

The Belgian Competition Authority imposes an interim measure to temporarily suspend the joint venture between two of the three main telecom companies in the national market (Telenet / Orange Belgium / Proximus)
Strelia (Brussels)
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Bird & Bird (Brussels)
On 8 January, the Belgian Competition Authority ("BCA") imposed an interim measure to temporarily suspend the joint venture ("JV") between Orange and Proximus, two of the three main telecom players in the Belgian market. The cooperation between Orange and Proximus relates to the sharing of (...)

The German Competition Authority conducts parallel investigation into potential for cartelization and merger review proceedings resulting in a conditional approval of the joint venture (Telekom / EWE)
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
Telekom and EWE, two of Germany’s largest telecommunications companies, sought to form a joint venture (JV) to expand the fire-optic broadband network in north-western Germany. On 21 March 2019, the German Federal Cartel Office (FCO) launched two sets of parallel proceedings: an investigation (...)

The German Competition Authority clears the plans of telecommunications companies to jointly expand and operate fiber-optic networks (Telekom Deutschland / EWE)
Bird & Bird (Dusseldorf)
The German Federal Cartel Office (“FCO”) has cleared the plans of Telekom Deutschland GmbH and EWE AG to jointly expand and operate fiber-optic networks in parts of North West Germany. This is a landmark decision by the FCO in relation to the expansion of fiber optic networks in Germany, (...)

The EU Commission clears subject to behavioural commitments a merger in the telecommunications sector (Telia / Bonnier Broadcasting)
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
On 12 November 2019, the European Commission (“Commission”) conditionally cleared Telia Company’s acquisition of Bonnier Broadcasting Company after a Phase II investigation. Telia is a Swedish telecommunications company that provides fixed and mobile telecommunications, broadband and television (...)

The EU Commission clears a merger subject to remedies in the market of telecommunications and TV broadcasting (Telia / Bonnier Broadcasting)
European Commission - DG COMP (Brussels)
Mergers: Commission clears Telia’s acquisition of Bonnier Broadcasting, subject to conditions* The European Commission has approved, under the EU Merger Regulation, the proposed acquisition of Bonnier Broadcasting by Telia. The approval is conditional on full compliance with a commitments (...)

The French Competition Authority decides to not renew remedies previously imposed to clear a merger in the telecommunications sector (SFR / Altice)
French Competition Authority (Paris)
Acquisition of SFR by Altice: the Autorité de la concurrence will not renew the commitments and maintains certain injunctions* Given changes to the markets, the Autorité de la concurrence will not renew the commitments made by Altice upon acquiring SFR. However, the injunctions with penalty (...)

The Spanish Competition and Markets Authority fines company for for a merger commitment breach (Telefonica)
European Commission (Brussels)
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Gómez-Acebo & Pombo (Brussels)
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Basic-Fit (Hoofddorp)
The CNMC has fined Telefonica 1.5 million for breaching one of the commitments attached to its acquisition of DTS. The merger was cleared in 2015 by the CNMC on the condition that Telefonica fulfilled a number of commitments in the pay TV market. This included, among others, making (...)

The French Competition Authority closes ex officio proceedings to verify compliance of remedies concerning a merger in the telecom sector (Altice / SFR)
French Competition Authority (Paris)
Telecoms* The Autorité closes the ex officio proceedings it had started to ensure compliance with the commitments concerning the sale of Completel’s DSL network made by Altice France when it acquired SFR. The Autorité considers that there is no evidence to characterise Altice France’s actions (...)

The French Competition Authority clears the acquisition of a company in the telecommunication sector (Iliad 7 / Cellnex)
French Competition Authority (Paris)
The Autorité de la concurrence clears the acquisition of Iliad 7 by Cellnex* By this transaction, Iliad (Free) sells all the towers of its mobile network to the Spanish company Cellnex, which, from now on, will rent them to Iliad. On 8 August 2019, Cellnex notified the Autorité of its plan to (...)

The EU Commission conditionally clears a merger in the cable network market in four countries (Vodafone / Liberty Global)
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
On 18 July 2019, the European Commission (“Commission”) conditionally approved Vodafone’s acquisition of Liberty Global’s cable network business in four countries (Czechia, Germany, Hungary and Romania). In order to address competition concerns identified mainly in Germany regarding the ability of (...)

The EU Commission clears the acquisition, subject to remedies, of a cable business company (Vodafone / Liberty Global)
Bird & Bird (Dusseldorf)
On 18 July 2019, the European Commission (“EC”) cleared the acquisition of Liberty Global’s cable business by Vodafone in Germany, Czechia, Hungary and Romania subject to remedies. The concerns of the EC mainly related to the German market. In particular, the EC was worried that the transaction (...)

The EU Commission clears a merger subject to remedies in the telecommunication market (Vodafone / Liberty Global)
European Commission - DG COMP (Brussels)
Mergers: Commission clears Vodafone’s acquisition of Liberty Global’s cable business in Czechia, Germany, Hungary and Romania, subject to conditions* The European Commission has approved, under the EU Merger Regulation, the proposed acquisition by Vodafone of Liberty Global’s cable business in (...)

The Danish Competition Authority clears a merger subject to remedies in the market of retail provision of TV services via fibre optic infrastructure (SE / Eniig)
Danish Competition and Consumer Authority (Copenhagen)
The Danish Competition Council has approved the merger between SE a.m.b.a and Eniig a.m.b.a. subject to remedies* On 21 December 2018 the Danish Competition and Consumer Authority (hereinafter “DCCA”) received a complete notification of the merger between SE a.m.b.a. (hereinafter “SE”) and Eniig (...)

The Spanish Competition Authority investigates a possible infringement of merger commitments in the telecom sector (Telefónica)
European Commission (Brussels)
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Gómez-Acebo & Pombo (Brussels)
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Basic-Fit (Hoofddorp)
In 2015, the CNMC approved the acquisition of DTS by Telefónica, subject to a series of commitments relating to the pay television market. Telefónica undertook, inter alia, to make available 100% of its premium channels to third-party operators under conditions which would allow them to (...)

The OECD holds a roundtable on vertical mergers in the technology, media and telecom sector
OECD - Competition Division (Paris)
Vertical mergers are increasingly becoming a focus of attention in the antitrust sphere, due to a number of recent concentration operations among large vertically related companies in the technology, media and telecom industries. While traditionally presumed as pro-competitive, vertical mergers (...)

The EU General Court rejects a legal challenge to conditional clearance of a joint venture in the wholesale provision of premium pay-TV sports channels market (Vodafone / Liberty Global)
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
On 23 May 2019, the General Court of the European Union (“GC”) rejected a legal challenge brought against the European Commission’s (“Commission”) conditional clearance of the Liberty Global / Vodafone joint venture in the Netherlands by rival KPN (see VBB on Competition Law, Volume 2016, No. 8). (...)

The Italian Competition Authority conditionally clears a merger in the market for retail Pay-TV services (Sky / R2)
Luiss Guido Carli University (Rome)
On 20th May 2019, the Italian Competition Authority (the "AGCM") cleared the merger between Sky Italia S.r.l.’s ("SKY") and R2 S.r.l. ("R2"), a company formerly owned by Mediaset Premium S.p.A. ("MP") and providing technical and administrative platform services for broadcasting by means of (...)

The EU Commission opens an in-depth investigation regarding a merger in the audiovisual sector (Telia / Bonnier Broadcasting)
European Commission - DG COMP (Brussels)
Mergers: Commission opens in-depth investigation into Telia Company’s proposed acquisition of Bonnier Broadcasting* The European Commission has opened an in-depth investigation to assess the proposed acquisition of Bonnier Broadcasting by Telia Company under the EU Merger Regulation. The (...)

The Italian Competition Authority opens an in-depth investigation to assess a proposed acquisition in the pay-TV market (Sky / R2)
Luiss Guido Carli University (Rome)
On 7 March 2019, the Italian Competition Authority ("AGCM") opened an in-depth investigation (phase II) to assess the proposed acquisition of R2 S.r.l., the Operation Pay branch of Mediaset Premium, by Sky Italia S.r.l. and Sky Italian Holdings S.p.A. The investigation is aimed at examining (...)

The EU Commission sends a statement of objections to a company for alleged infringement of merger commitments (Telefónica Deutschland)
European Commission (Brussels)
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Gómez-Acebo & Pombo (Brussels)
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Basic-Fit (Hoofddorp)
On 22 February 2019, the Commission addressed an SoO to Telefónica Deutschland (“Telefónica”) detailing its concerns that the company may have breached one of the commitments linked to the Commission’s clearance of its acquisition of E-Plus in 2014. In particular, back then, Telefónica committed to (...)

The EU Commission issues first-ever statement of objections for breaching a merger commitment in the telecommunication sector (Telefónica Deutschland)
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
On 22 February 2019, the European Commission (“Commission”) sent a Statement of Objections to Telefónica Deutschland alleging that it breached a commitment offered in order to secure the Commission’s approval of its acquisition of E-Plus (see VBB on Competition Law, Volume 2014, No. 7). In (...)

The EU Commission alleges a telecommunication company has breached its remedies following the clearance of its merger (Telefónica Deutschland)
European Commission - DG COMP (Brussels)
Mergers: Commission alleges Telefónica breached commitments given to secure clearance of E-Plus acquisition* The European Commission has sent a Statement of Objections to Telefónica Deutschland alleging the company breached commitments it offered to secure the Commission’s approval under the EU (...)

The Hellenic Competition Authority clears the acquisition of the joint control of companies in the media sector (Alpha Satellite / Alpha Radio / Alpha Kronos Radio)
Kyriakides Georgopoulos (Athens)
MERGER CONTROL-MEDIA SECTOR HCC cleared the acquisition of the joint control of Alpha Satellite TV SA, Alpha Radio SA and Alpha Kronos Radio SA by Motor Oil, Alpha Media and Dimitris Kontominas. In a Plenary Session, the HCC unanimously proceeded in February 2019 to the clearance of the (...)

The EU Commission opens an in-depth investigation to assess a merger in telecoms and TV services market (Liberty Global / Vodafone)
European Commission - DG COMP (Brussels)
Mergers: Commission opens in-depth investigation into proposed acquisition by Vodafone of Liberty Global’s business in Czechia, Germany, Hungary and Romania* The European Commission has opened an in-depth investigation to assess Vodafone’s proposed acquisition of Liberty Global’s business in (...)

The EU Commission clears a merger in the telecommunications services market (Austria / T-Mobile)
European Commission - DG COMP (Brussels)
Mergers: Commission approves acquisition of UPC Austria by T-Mobile Austria* The European Commission has approved unconditionally under the EU Merger Regulation the proposed acquisition of UPC Austria by T-Mobile Austria. The Commission concluded that the transaction would raise no competition (...)

The EU Commission opens an in-depth investigation concerning a merger in the Dutch retail mobile telecommunications market (Tele2 / T-Mobile)
European Commission - DG COMP (Brussels)
MERGERS: COMMISSION OPENS IN-DEPTH INVESTIGATION INTO PROPOSED ACQUISITION OF TELE2 NL BY T-MOBILE NL IN THE NETHERLANDS* The European Commission has opened an in-depth investigation to assess the proposed acquisition of Tele2 NL by T-Mobile NL under the EU Merger Regulation. The Commission is (...)

The EU Commission clears for the second time a merger subject to remedies on the market for the wholesale of premium Pay TV film channels (Liberty Global / Ziggo)
European Commission - DG COMP (Brussels)
Mergers: Commission confirms approval of acquisition of Dutch cable TV operator Ziggo by Liberty Global, subject to conditions* The European Commission has reapproved with conditions, under the EU Merger Regulation, the acquisition of Ziggo by Liberty Global. The merger was first approved in (...)

The EU Commission fines €125 million a multinational cable and telecommunications company for gun jumping (Altice / PT Portugal)
Callol, Coca & Asociados (Madrid)
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Callol, Coca & Asociados (Madrid)
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Callol, Coca & Asociados (Madrid)
On 24 April 2018, the European Commission (EC) fined Altice €124.5 million (the highest fine imposed in Europe for gun-jumping) for the acquisition of PT Portugal without having notified the operation to the EC and obtained the mandatory clearance. In February 2015, Altice notified to the EC (...)

The EU Commission fines €124.5 million a multinational cable and telecommunications company for gun-jumping (Altice / PT Portugal)
Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer (London)
With complex merger reviews now taking 6-15 months, buyers can face lengthy periods between signing and closing, when they bear commercial risk but the target is required to operate entirely independently. While most competition agencies allow buyers to take reasonable and necessary steps to (...)

The EU Commission fines a multinational cable and telecommunications company €124.5 million for breaching EU Merger Regulation by implementing its acquisition before the approval by the Commission (Altice / PT Portugal)
Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer (London)
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Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer (Brussels)
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Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer (Brussels)
The European Commission (Commission) announced today its decision to fine multinational cable and telecoms company Altice €124.5 million for breaching the EU Merger Regulation by implementing its 2015 acquisition of a telecommunications operator, PT Portugal, before notification to, or approval (...)

The EU Commission fines for gun jumping a telecommunications company (Altice / PT Portugal)
Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer (Brussels)
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Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer (London)
European Commission decision provides guidance on how merging parties can mitigate the risk of ’gun jumping’ Following on from our update on this topic in April, the European Commission (Commission) has published the non-confidential version of its decision to fine multinational cable and (...)

The EU Commission imposes record €125M fine on a multinational cable and telecommunications company for gun jumping (Altice / PT Portugal)
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
On 24 April 2018, the European Commission fined Altice, a Dutch-based telecom operator, € 125 million for procedural infringements of the EU Merger Regulation. By way of background, on 9 December 2014, Altice entered into an agreement to acquire sole control of PT Portugal. Altice notified the (...)

The EU Commission fines €124.5 million a multinational cable and telecoms company for having implemented its acquisition prior to notifying the transaction and receiving clearance (Altice / PT Portugal)
Herbert Smith Freehills (London)
The EU Commission has imposed a fine of €124.5 million on Altice, a multinational cable and telecoms company, for having implemented its acquisition of Portuguese telecoms operator PT Portugal prior to notifying the transaction and receiving clearance under the EU Merger Regulation (EUMR), (...)

The EU Commission fines a multinational cable and telecommunications company for gun jumping (Altice / PT Portugal)
European Commission - DG COMP (Brussels)
Mergers: Commission fines Altice €125 million for breaching EU rules and controlling PT Portugal before obtaining merger approval* The European Commission has imposed a €124.5 million fine on Altice, the multinational cable and telecommunications company based in the Netherlands, for (...)

The EU Commission imposes a record fine of 124.5M euros for gun-jumping in relation to a merger in the telecommunications sector (Altice / PT Portugal)
McDermott Will & Emery (Brussels)
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McDermott Will & Emery (Brussels)
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Norton Rose Fulbright (Brussels)
When drawing up an acquisition agreement in a transaction that will be notifiable to the EC for clearance under the EUMR, the acquirer must ensure that any veto or similar rights that it has prior to implementation of the transaction are strictly limited to that which is necessary to preserve (...)

The EU Commission publishes its decision in a gun-jumping case (Altice / PT Portugal)
Simmons & Simmons (London)
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Simmons & Simmons (London)
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Crowell & Moring (London)
On 24 April 2018, the European Commission (Commission) fined Altice NV (Altice) €124.5m for breaching both Article 4(1) and 7(1) of Council Regulation (EC) No 139/2004 (the EU Merger Regulation or EUMR). Article 4(1) EUMR contains the “notification requirement” under which relevant transactions (...)

The EU Commission imposes a fine of €124.5 million for gun jumping to a multinational cable and telecommunications company (Altice / PT Portugal)
MemeryCrystal
COMMISSION IMPOSES UPON DUTCH CABLE & TELCO COMPANY ALTICE A RECORD FINE OF €125 MILLION FOR GUN JUMPING UNDER THE EU MERGER REGULATION* On 24th April 2018 the European Commission announced that it had imposed a fine of €124.5 million on Altice, the multinational cable and telecommunications (...)

The Dutch Trade and Industry Appeals Tribunal upholds the Competition Authority’s approval for an acquisition in the sector of telecommunications regulation (KPN / Vodaphone)
Jones Day (Brussels)
In Short The Ruling: The Dutch competition authority’s approval of KPN’s acquisition of fiber operator Reggefiber was upheld by the Dutch Trade and Industry Appeals Tribunal in February 2018. In assessing the merger’s competitive effects, the Tribunal notably considered regulatory measures (...)

The EU Commission conditionally approves a proposed merger in the providers of pay-TV channels market (Discovery / Scripps)
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
On 6 February 2018, the European Commission conditionally approved the proposed acquisition of Scripps by Discovery. Both Discovery and Scripps are active primarily as providers of pay-TV channels to TV distributors in Europe. The Commission was concerned that the deal risked increasing (...)

The EU Commission conditionally clears a merger in the semiconductor industry (Qualcomm / NXP)
IPR University Center (Helsinki)
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Grimaldi Studio Legale (Brussels)
Qualcomm’s Acquisition of NXP Receives Antitrust Clearance by the European Commission, Subject to Commitments* Introduction On 28 April 2017, the European Commission (“Commission”) received, pursuant to the EU Merger Regulation, notification of a proposed concentration involving the acquisition, (...)

The Indian Competition Authority approves acquisition of major IT company’s retail mobile telephony business by its telecom competitor (Airtel / Tata Teleservices)
Vaish Associates Advocates (New Delhi)
CCI approves Airtel-Tata Teleservices Deal* CCI vide its order dated November 16, 2017 has approved the acquisition of consumer mobile business or retail mobile telephony business of Tata companies by Airtel. The deal comes at a time when the telecom sector, bruised by tariff war and mounting (...)

The Spanish Supreme Court dismisses appeals by mobile operators and rules that the acquisition should have been notified for merger control (Orange / Simyo)
Callol, Coca & Asociados (Madrid)
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Callol, Coca & Asociados (Madrid)
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Callol, Coca & Asociados (Madrid)
On 23 July 2013, the NMCC found France Telecom España, S.A.U. (Orange) guilty for having failed to notify for merger control the acquisition of the exclusive control of KPN Spain, S.L.U. (SIMYO). Spanish law states that concentrations that meet either one of the (turnover and market share) (...)

The EU General Court sets aside the Commission’s approval decision of a merger in the market for television and telecommunication services (Liberty Global / Ziggo)
Giannino SI (Monserrato)
By the judgment recently rendered in the KPN/Commission case , the General Court of the EU (GC) has quashed the decision previously made by the European Commission by which it gave a conditional go-ahead to the Ziggo acquisition by Liberty Global. The appeal was filed by a competitor of the (...)

The EU General Court annuls a Commission’s conditional merger clearance in the audiovisual sector (Liberty Global / Ziggo)
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
On 26 October 2017, the General Court annulled the European Commission’s conditional merger clearance decision in Liberty Global/Ziggo. The Commission had approved the acquisition of Ziggo by Dutch rival cable TV operator Liberty Global in 2014, subject to extensive conditions including the (...)

The EU General Court orders fresh review of a merger (Liberty Global / Ziggo)
Dechert (Brussels)
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Dechert (Brussels)
The EU lower court has overturned a 2014 merger clearance by the European Commission (EC) following an appeal by a third party. Overturning the clearance does not mean that the deal is now prohibited. Instead, the case goes back to the EC, and the parties have to re-notify. At best this is (...)

The French Competition Authority clears a merger in the telecommunication and media sector (SFR / Groupe News Participation)
French Competition Authority (Paris)
The Autorité de la Concurrence clears the acquisition of Groupe News Participations by SFR Group * Parties to the operation On 6 April 2017, the SFR Group notified the Autorité de la Concurrence that it was increasing its holding in Groupe News Participations (hereafter “GNP”), thus taking sole (...)

The Belgian Competition Authority clears a merger subject to remedies on the telecommunication market (Coditel / Telenet)
Belgian Competition Authority (Brussels)
THE BCA HAS APPROVED CONDITIONALLY THE ACQUISITION OF CODITEL BY TELENET* The Competition College of the Belgian Competition Authority (BCA) has approved conditionally on 12 June 2017 the acquisition of Coditel Brabant SPRL and her subsidiary Coditel SARL (hereafter ‘Coditel’) by Telenet Group (...)

The Indian Competition Authority unconditionally clears merger between an international and a national telecommunications company but also warns that parties must comply with DoT Merger Guidelines by the Ministry of Communications and Information Technology (Bharti Airtel / Telenor)
Vaish Associates Advocates (New Delhi)
India: CCI approves combination of Bharti Airtel and Telenor* The CCI vide its order dated 30 May, 2017 has approved the amalgamation of Telenor India along with its assets, liabilities, interests and obligations with Airtel through a court driven scheme of merger. Airtel, a part of the (...)

The EU Commission conditionally approves the acquisition of a de facto sole control over a national incumbent telecommunications company, subject to remedies (Telecom Italia / Vivendi)
European Commission - DG COMP (Brussels)
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European Parliament (Brussels)
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European Commission - DG COMP (Brussels)
Vivendi/Telecom Italia - jurisdictional and substantive assessment of minority shareholdings* In a nutshell: The Vivendi/Telecom Italia case raised interesting issues related to minority shareholdings. In relation to jurisdiction, the transaction consisted of the acquisition of (de facto) (...)

The EU Commission clears a merger subject to remedies in the telecommunication market (Telecom Italia / Vivendi)
European Commission - DG COMP (Brussels)
MERGERS: COMMISSION APPROVES VIVENDI’S ACQUISITION OF TELECOM ITALIA, SUBJECT TO CONDITIONS* The European Commission has approved the acquisition of de facto control over Telecom Italia by Vivendi. The decision is conditional on the divestment of Telecom Italia’s stake in Persidera. Telecom (...)

The EU Commission alleges a telecommunication company has breached EU rules by implementing its merger before notification or approval (Altice / PT Portugal)
European Commission - DG COMP (Brussels)
Mergers: Commission alleges Altice breached EU rules by early implementation of PT Portugal acquisition* The European Commission has sent a Statement of Objections alleging that multinational telecommunications company Altice (the Netherlands), breached the EU Merger Regulation by implementing (...)

The EU Commission sends a statement of objections to a company to investigate whether a merger was implemented before the Commission’s clearance (Altice / PT Portugal)
Shearman & Sterling (London)
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United Kingdom’s Competition Authority (CMA) (London)
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Shearman & Sterling (London)
When a transaction meets the thresholds of the EU Merger Regulation, companies must notify and obtain clearance from the European Commission before implementing the transaction. This means that until clearance is obtained, companies should continue to operate independently (including (...)

The EU Commission sends a statement of objections alleging that multinational telecommunications company breached the EU Merger regulation by implementing its acquisition before notification or approval by the Commission (Altice / PT Portugal)
Herbert Smith Freehills (Brussels)
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Herbert Smith Freehills (London)
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Herbert Smith Freehills (Paris)
On 18 May 2017, the European Commission imposed a record fine of €110 million on Facebook for providing incorrect/misleading information to the Commission during its review of Facebook’s acquisition of WhatsApp under the EU merger regulation (EUMR). On the same day, the Commission issued a (...)

The EU Commission clears a merger subject to remedies in the identity and security solutions market (Morpho / Advent International)
European Commission - DG COMP (Brussels)
MERGERS: COMMISSION CLEARS ACQUISITION OF SMART CARD MAKER MORPHO BY ADVENT INTERNATIONAL, SUBJECT TO CONDITIONS* The European Commission has cleared under the EU Merger Regulation the proposed acquisition of identity and security solutions provider Morpho, based in France, by Advent (...)

The French Competition Authority fines companies for breaching commitments on fibre optic rollout (Altice / SFR)
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
On 9 March 2017, the French Competition Authority (“FCA”) fined Altice and SFR Group € 40 million for violating commitments entered into with the FCA at the conclusion of its review of the Altice/SFR merger in October 2014. By way of background, the commitments required Altice/ SFR to honour an (...)

The Dutch Competition Authority clears a merger in the telecommunication market (Vodafone Thuis / T-Mobile)
Netherlands Authority for Consumers & Markets (ACM) (The Hague)
ACM CLEARS ACQUISITION OF VODAFONE THUIS BY T-MOBILE* Telecom provider T-Mobile is allowed to acquire the fixed-telecom division of Vodafone Netherlands. Vodafone has branded this division ‘Vodafone Thuis,’ which offers services for fixed telephony, TV, and internet. The Netherlands Authority (...)

The French Competition Authority sanctions companies for implementing a transaction which has been notified to the FCA but has not yet received a clearance decision in the telecommunications industry (Alice & SFR / OTL)
United Kingdom’s Competition Authority (CMA) (London)
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Franklin (Paris)
FRENCH COMPETITION AUTHORITY IMPOSES ITS FIRST EVER FINE FOR GUN-JUMPING* For the first time ever, on 8 November 2016 the French Competition Authority (FCA) sanctioned companies for implementing a transaction that had been notified to the FCA but not yet received a clearance decision, (...)

The French Competition Authority fines €80M a group and its recently acquired subsidiaries for having coordinated their business strategies and commercial behaviour prior to merger control clearance (Alice & SFR / OTL)
Hogan Lovells (Paris)
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Grall & Associés (Paris)
This article was first published in Concurrences Review N° 2-2017, Art. N° 83875, pp. 231-239 I. Introduction In November 2016, the French Competition Authority (“FCA”) fined French-based Altice/Numericable group and its recently-acquired telecom subsidiaries SFR and Virgin Mobile France for (...)

The French Competition Authority fines a major French telecommunications operator for gun-jumping (Altice)
Jones Day (Brussels)
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Jones Day (Paris)
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Jones Day (Paris)
This week, the French Competition Authority ("FCA") imposed a EUR 80 million fine on the Altice Group, a major French telecommunications operator, for implementing two transactions before approval by the FCA (so-called "gun jumping"). The full text is not yet available, but this decision (...)

The French Competition Authority fines €80 million a multinational telecom company for the premature completion of two mergers (Altice & SFR / OTL)
French Competition Authority (Paris)
The Autorité de la concurrence fines the Altice group 80 million euros for the premature completion of two mergers notified in 2014* The Autorité de la concurrence issued a decision today to fine jointly Altice Luxembourg and SFR Group 80 million euros, in application of Section II of Article (...)

The French Competition Authority publishes its long awaited first decision sanctioning gun jumping practices (Altice / SFR / Virgin)
DLA Piper (Paris)
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Dazi Avocats (Paris)
In its decision dated 8 November 2016, the French Competition Authority (FCA) describes with much detail its appraisal of a gun jumping infringement. Among the many lessons arising from such decision, one is clearly for future redactors of corporate documentation, another is for top management (...)

The French Competition Authority fines companies for gun-jumping (Altice / SFR)
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
On 8 November 2016, the French Competition Authority (FCA) fined Altice (trading as Numericable) and SFR Group € 80 million for the coordination of commercial behaviour prior to obtaining French merger control clearance. The FCA decision is ground-breaking as it imposes the highest fine ever in (...)

The EU Commission clears a merger, subject to remedies, on the telecommunications market (Hutchison / VimpelCom)
European Commission - DG COMP (Brussels)
Mergers: Commission approves Hutchison/VimpelCom joint venture in Italy, subject to conditions* The European Commission has approved under the EU Merger Regulation a proposed telecommunications joint venture between Hutchison and VimpelCom in Italy. The approval is conditional on the (...)

The EU Commission conditionally approves a joint venture in retail mobile market (Hutchinson/ VimpelCom)
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
On 1 September 2016, the European Commission conditionally cleared the proposed creation of a telecommunications joint venture between Hutchison’s H3G and VimpelCom’s WIND, a combination of the third and fourth largest operators in the Italian retail mobile market. Before the deal, the Italian (...)

The EU Commission approves a joint venture between the third and fourth-largest telecom operators in Italy subject to structural remedies (Hutchison / VimpelCom)
Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton (Rome)
European Commission approves a joint venture between the third and fourth largest telecom operators in Italy subject to structural remedies* On 1 September 2016 the European Commission approved a proposed joint venture between Vimpelcom and CK Hutchison, respectively the owners of Wind and H3G (...)

The EU Commission conditionally clears the creation of a joint venture between two mobile telecom operators (Vodafone / Liberty Global)
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
On 3 August 2016, the European Commission conditionally cleared the creation of a joint venture between mobile telecom operator Vodafone and cable company Liberty Global in the Netherlands. The joint venture will offer unified communications services and will compete with KPN, the only other (...)

The EU Commission clears a merger, subject to remedies, in the telecommunication market and rejects a referral request issued by the Dutch competition authority (Vodafone / Liberty Global)
European Commission - DG COMP (Brussels)
MERGERS: COMMISSION CLEARS VODAFONE/LIBERTY GLOBAL TELECOMS JOINT VENTURE, SUBJECT TO CONDITION; REJECTS REFERRAL REQUEST BY DUTCH COMPETITION AUTHORITY * The European Commission has cleared under the EU Merger Regulation the proposed creation of a joint venture in the Netherlands by mobile (...)

The Chinese MOFCOM releases a company from conditions previously imposed in an e-commerce merger (Wal-Mart / Yihaodian)
China Competition Bulletin (Beijing)
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University of Melbourne
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University of Melbourne
On 30 May 2016, the MOFCOM decided to release Wal-Mart from the conditions that it had imposed on Wal- Mart’s acquisition of Yihaodian in 2012. Wal-Mart had applied for release from these conditions in July 2015. When the MOFCOM conditionally approved Wal-Mart’s acquisition in 2012, the (...)

The EU Commission prohibits a merger between two telecommunication companies in the UK mobile market (Hutchison / Telefónica UK)
European Commission - DG COMP (Brussels)
Mergers: Commission prohibits Hutchison’s proposed acquisition of Telefónica UK* The Commission has blocked the proposed acquisition of O2 by Hutchison under the EU Merger Regulation. It had strong concerns that UK mobile customers would have had less choice and paid higher prices as a result of (...)

The EU Commission blocks a merger between two mobile networks due to the risk of price increase on the market (Telefónica / Hutchison)
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
On 11 May 2016, the European Commission (“Commission”) prohibited the proposed acquisition of Telefónica’s O2 by Hutchison’s Three under the EU Merger Regulation. The Commission’s primary concern was that a combined Three/ O2 would have the ability and incentive to raise prices in the UK market for (...)

The French Competition Authority fines a mobile phone company for non-compliance with some of its merger remedies (SFR / Numéricable)
French Competition Authority (Paris)
Overseas Mobile Telephony* The Autorité de la concurrence fines Altice/Numericable group for non-compliance with some of the commitments linked to the divestiture of Outremer Telecom’s mobile telephony business made at the time of its acquisition of SFR. Having observed the non-compliance by (...)

The EU Commission opens an in-depth investigation pertaining to a joint venture on the market of telecommunication in Italy (Hutchison / VimpelCom)
European Commission - DG COMP (Brussels)
Mergers: Commission opens in-depth investigation into proposed Hutchison/VimpelCom joint venture in Italy* The European Commission has opened an in-depth investigation to assess whether the proposed joint venture between the telecommunications activities of Hutchison and VimpelCom in Italy is (...)

The Competition Commission of Pakistan clears a merger subject to remedies in the telecommunications market (Mobilink / Warid)
Concurrences (Paris)
On 21 March 2016, the Competition Commission of Pakistan (Commission) approved the proposed merger of Mobilink, a subsidiary of VimpelCom, and Warid, a subsidiary of the Abu Dhabi Group. The firms are the first and fifth largest mobile network operators in Pakistan, while VimpelCom is present (...)

The EU Commission conditionally approves a merger in the telecommunications sector (Liberty Global / BASE)
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
On 4 February 2016, the European Commission conditionally approved the acquisition of Belgian mobile network operator (“MNO”) BASE by Liberty Global, which controls the Belgian telecommunications operator and mobile virtual network operator (“MVNO”) Telenet. Telenet has a significant position in a (...)

The EU Commission approves acquisition of a mobile network operator by a virtual mobile network operator, subject to fix-it-first remedies (Liberty Global / BASE)
European Commission - DG COMP (Brussels)
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University of Tokyo
LIBERTY GLOBAL / BASE: FIWING IT FIRST IN THE BELGIAN MOBILE MARKET* In a nutshell: Liberty Global/BASE entailed the acquisition of a mobile network operator by a mobile virtual network operator. The transaction prompted an in-depth investigation and was ultimately cleared with a fix-it-first (...)

The EU Commission study analyzes two national telecom merger cases, and finds an associated increase in prices in the Netherlands case, but not in the Austria case (T-Mobile / Orange), (T-Mobile / tele.ring)
European Commission (Brussels)
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CRA International (Munich)
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European Commission - DG COMP (Brussels)
Ex post analysis of two mobile telecom mergers: T-Mobile/tele.ring in Austria and T-Mobile/Orange in the Netherlands* In a nutshell: Ex post evaluation of merger decisions is a valuable tool for improving the understanding of markets and to assess merger control policy. To provide reliable (...)

The EU Commission pursues its in-depth investigation on a merger in the mobile telecommunications services market without referral to the UK NCA (Hutchison / Telefónica UK)
European Commission - DG COMP (Brussels)
MERGERS: COMMISSION CONTINUES INVESTIGATION OF HUTCHISON 3G / TELEFÓNICA UK MERGER WITHOUT REFERRAL TO UK* Commission does not refer investigation of Hutchison/Telefónica UK merger to UK The European Commission has decided not to refer the planned acquisition of Telefónica UKby Hutchison to the (...)

The EU Commission opens an in-depth investigation concerning a merger in the mobile telecommunications market (Hutchison / Telefónica UK)
European Commission - DG COMP (Brussels)
MERGERS: COMMISSION OPENDS IN-DEPTH INVESTIGATION INTO HUTCHISON’S PROPOSED ACQUISIITON OF TELEFÓNICA UK* The European Commission will investigate in-depth Hutchison’s takeover of Telefónica UK. The European Commission has opened an in-depth investigation under the EU Merger Regulation to assess (...)

The French Competition Authority clears an acquisition in the overseas’s mobile telecom market (Iliad / Hiridjee)
French Competition Authority (Paris)
THE AUTORITÉ DE LA CONCURRENCE CLEARS THE ACQUISITION OF JOINT CONTROL OF OUTREMER TELECOM’S MOBILE ACTIVITIES BY ILIAD ALONGSIDE HIRIDJEE* The Autorité de la concurrence has reviewed the acquisition by Iliad of 50% of the capital of the company Telecom Reunion Mayotte, which will henceforth be (...)

The French Competition Authority opens ex officio proceedings to review whether a internet provider has respected its merger remedies (SFR / Bouygues Telecom)
French Competition Authority (Paris)
SFR/Bouygues Telecom agreement to deploy fibre in very densely populated areas* Following a complaint made by Bouygues Telecom, the Autorité de la concurrence has opened ex officio proceedings to review the conditions under which Numericable complies with its commitments made in relation to the (...)

The EU Commission opens an in-depth investigation regarding a takeover in the mobile phone retail market (Liberty Global / BASE)
European Commission - DG COMP (Brussels)
MERGERS: COMMISSION OPENS IN-DEPTH INVESTIGATION INTO PROPOSED ACQUISITION OF BASE BELGIUM BY LIBERTY GLOBAL* The European Commission will investigate in-depth the Liberty Global/BASE Belgium takeover. The European Commission has opened an in-depth investigation under the EU Merger Regulation (...)

The Chinese MOFCOM fines several undertakings for breaches of merger notification rules (FJEI / FPID) (Nanjing Puzhen / Bombardier Sweden) (BestTv / Microsoft)
AnJie Law (Beijing)
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AnJie Law (Beijing)
Warning from MOFCOM: Second Wave of Penalties Imposed for Breaches of Concentration Notification Rules* On September 29th 2015, the Ministry of Commerce of the P.R.C (“MOFCOM”) published four administrative decisions on penalties for illegal activities involved in the concentration of (...)

The EU Commission clears a merger beetwen two mobile network equipment manufacturers (Nokia / Alcatel-Lucent)
European Commission - DG COMP (Brussels)
MERGERS: COMMISSION APPROVES NOKIA’S ACQUISITION OF ALCATEL-LUCENT* The European Commission has approved under the EU Merger Regulation the proposed acquisition of Alcatel-Lucent by Nokia. Both companies are global providers of telecommunications equipment and related services. The Commission (...)

The French Competition Authority approves the sale of an oversea telecom company, a mandatory condition to clear a merger in the market of mobile telephony (SFR / Numéricable)
French Competition Authority (Paris)
Acquisition of SFR by Numericable: France’s Competition authority and ARCEP approve the sale to the firm Hiridjee of the Outremer Telecom mobile operations that Numericable agreed to divest in La Réunion and Mayotte* On 30 October 2014, the Autorité de la concurrence approved the sale of SFR to (...)

The UK Competition and Markets Authority accepts to proceed with a fast track reference of the merger to phase 2 concerning a merger involving the largest suppliers of fixed communications services and mobile communications services (BT / EE)
United Kingdom’s Competition Authority (CMA) (London)
BT/EE merger fast-tracked to phase 2 investigation* The CMA has today referred BT Group plc’s anticipated acquisition of EE Limited for an in-depth phase 2 investigation. BT and EE are, respectively, the largest suppliers of fixed communications services and mobile communications services in (...)

The Belgian Competition Authority lifts four-year old merger conditions from the conditional approval of an acquisition (Proximus / The Phone House)
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
On 8 June 2015, the Belgian Competition Authority (BCA) lifted four-year old merger conditions from the BCA’s conditional approval of the acquisition by telecommunications operator Proximus (formerly Belgacom) of telecommunications retailer The Phone House. In 2011, the BCA’s predecessor agency, (...)

The EU Commission approves an acquisition in the telecommunications sector after a lengthy Phase II investigation and subject to extensive commitments (Orange / Jazztel)
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
On 19 May 2015, the European Commission conditionally approved the acquisition of Jazztel by rival telecommunications provider Orange. The approval, after a lengthy Phase II investigation including a Statement of Objections issued in February, is subject to extensive commitments to facilitate a (...)

The EU Commission clears a merger subject to remedies in the retail markets involving fixed internet access services (Orange / Jazztel)
European Commission - DG COMP (Brussels)
Commission clears acquisition of Jazztel by Orange, subject to conditions* The European Commission has approved under the EU Merger Regulation the proposed acquisition of Jazztel plc, a telecommunications company registered in the UK but mainly active in Spain, by rival Orange SA of France. (...)

The EU Commission clears an international telecom’s merger subject to conditions of another national telecom (Orange / Jazztel)
European Commission (Brussels)
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European Commission - DG COMP (Brussels)
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European Commission - DG COMP (Brussels)
Orange/Jazztel: Convergence meets Consolidation in the Spanish Telecoms Sector* In a nutshell: The Orange/Jazztel transaction takes place in a market that tipped toward fixed-mobile multiple play offers. The forward-looking analysis included an assessment of the parties’ likely future roll-out (...)

The Spanish Competition Authority clears the acquisition of the first national pay-tv provider by a direct competitor (Telefónica / DTS)
Linklaters (Madrid)
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Linklaters (Madrid)
1 Introduction On 22 April 2015, seven months after it was notified of the incumbent telecoms operator Telefónica’s acquisition of sole control of Distribuidora de Televisión Digital, S.A. (“DTS”), the National Markets and Competition Authority (“CNMC”) cleared the deal subject to commitments . (...)

The Spanish Competition Authority approves an acquisition in the pay TV and telecommunications markets by a direct competitor in a second phase decision with commitments (Telefónica / DTS)
Callol, Coca & Asociados (Madrid)
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Callol, Coca & Asociados (Madrid)
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Callol, Coca & Asociados (Madrid)
The approved transaction consists of the acquisition by Telefónica (incumbent telecommunications operator also active in the pay TV market) of the exclusive control of DTS, through the purchase of the 56 % share capital in the hands of Prisa, which adds to the 44% share capital already owned by (...)

The Finnish Competition Authority clears a merger subject to remedies in the telephone and data communications services markets (Elisa Oyj / Anvia Oyj)
Finnish Competition and Consumer Authority (Helsinki)
THE FINNISH COMPETITION AND CONSUMER AUTHORITY (FCCA) GIVES CONDITIONAL ACCEPTANCE OF ACQUISITION OF ANVIA BY ELISA* The FCCA has today accepted conditionally the transaction whereby Elisa Oyj will gain control over Anvia Oyj. The conditions relate to broadband services on a landline network (...)

The Italian Competition Authority opens Phase II proceedings on hostile takeover bid over 100% (EI Towers / Rai Way)
Bonelli Erede (Rome)
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Bonelli Erede (Rome)
In its decision of 10 March 2015, the Italian Competition Authority (the “ICA” or the “Authority”) decided to open Phase II proceedings in relation to the merger notified on 25 February consisting of EI Towers S.p.A.’s (“EI Towers”) hostile takeover bid over 100% of Rai Way S.p.A.’s (“Rai Way” (...)

The Norwegian Competition Authority conditionally clears a three-to-two merger in the telecom sector (TeliaSonera / Tele2 Norge)
Haavind (Oslo)
Commitments Package Saved 3-to-2 Mobile Merger* In February 2015 TeliaSonera, the Finnish-Swedish telecoms player, was given a green light to take over Tele2’s mobile operations in Norway. The Norwegian Competition Authority had voiced significant concerns over the deal, signalling that (...)

The French Competition Authority opens ex officio proceedings to review the conditions under which a phone carrier complies with commitments (SFR / Numéricable)
French Competition Authority (Paris)
Acquisition of SFR by Numericable.* The Autorité de la concurrence opens ex officio proceedings to review the conditions under which Numericable complies with its commitment to divest Outremer Telecom’s mobile telephony activities in La Réunion and Mayotte. On 30 October 2014, the Autorité de la (...)

The French Competition Authority clears, subject to remedies, a merger in the mobile virtual networks market (Virgin Mobile / Numericable)
French Competition Authority (Paris)
The Autorité de la concurrence clears Virgin Mobile’s acquisition by Numericable* The Autorité de la concurrence has cleared the acquisition of Omer Telecom Limited (“OTL”) by Numericable. OTL is a virtual mobile phone operator operating under the Virgin Mobile brand. This decision takes place (...)

The Ukranian Antimonopoly Committee intends to reconsider its decision granting merger clearance on the telecommunication technologies market (Kyivstar)
Arzinger (Kiev)
Antitrust authority of Ukraine intends to reconsider its decision granting merger clearance on the telecommunication technologies market of Ukraine* In early November 2014 the Antimonopoly Committee of Ukraine made a statement, announcing that it was going to reconsider its position on the (...)

The French Competition Authority clears the takeover of a mobile phone operator subject to structural and behavioural commitments (SFR / Numéricable)
Herbert Smith Freehills (Paris)
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Herbert Smith Freehills (Paris)
Introduction On 30 October 2014, following an in-depth review, the French Competition Authority (the "FCA") authorised the takeover of the mobile phone operator SFR by Numericable Group, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Altice. Before the transaction, SFR was wholly owned by the Vivendi group; (...)

The French Competition Authority clears, subject to remedies, an acquisition in the high-speed broadband access market (SFR / Numéricable)
French Competition Authority (Paris)
The Autorité de la concurrence gives conditional clearance to the acquisition of SFR by Numericable, an Altice subsidiary. * Among the commitments discussed and negotiated with the Autorité de la concurrence, Numericable commits to give competitors (internet service providers, MVNO) access to (...)

The EU Commission unconditionally clears the acquisition of a real-time messaging services provider by social networking company (Facebook / WhatsApp)
Ramón y Cajal (Madrid)
Background information On 3 October 2014 the European Commission ("Commission") unconditionally clears in first phase the €14 billion acquisition of WhatsApp by Facebook (the “Transaction”). The Transaction was already conditionally authorized in April 2014 by the US Federal Trade Commission (...)

The EU Commission unconditionally approves in first phase the acquisition of a real time messaging services provider by a social networking company (Facebook / WhatsApp)
European Parliament (Brussels)
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European Commission (Brussels)
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European Commission - Legal Service (Brussels)
"What’s Up with Merger Control in the Digital Sector? Lessons from the Facebook/WhatsApp EU merger case"* The Facebook/WhatsApp decision provides an insight into how the Commission tackles novel issues in the application of merger control rules to the digital sector, in particular to free (...)

The EU Commission approves without commitments an acquisition in the information technology sector (Facebook / WhatsApp)
Squire Patton Boggs (Brussels)
EU Commission approves Facebook’s acquisition of WhatsApp* On 3 October 2014, the European Commission of the European Union (the “Commission”) approved the acquisition without any commitments. After the approval of the acquisition of Skype by Microsoft in 2011 and of the acquisition of Nokia by (...)

The Canadian Competition Bureau continues to watch over the telecommunication market (Eastlink / Bruce Telecom)
Stikeman Elliott (Ottawa)
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Stikeman Elliott (Ottawa)
Eastlink and Bruce Telecom abandon $26.5M merger amid Competition Bureau concerns* On August 15, 2014, the Competition Bureau (the Bureau) announced that Bragg Communications Inc. (Eastlink) and Bruce Telecom had terminated an announced merger, which would have resulted in the acquisition of (...)

The French Competition Authority opens in-depth investigation on an acquisition in the telecom market (Altice / SFR)
French Competition Authority (Paris)
The Autorité de la concurrence has decided to open an in-depth investigation into the acquisition of SFR by the Altice Group* On 4 June 2014, the Numericable Group, a subsidiary of the Altice Group, filed a merger notification to the Autorité de la Concurrence relating to its plan to acquire SFR (...)

The Cypriot Commission for the Protection of Competition receives notification of a merger on the telecommunication market (GO / Cablenet Communication Systems)
Commission for the Protection of Competition of the Republic of Cyprus (Nicosia)
Press Release published on the official website of the Cypriot Commission for the Protection of Competition. Notification concerning the acquisition of share capital of Cablenet Communication Systems Ltd by GO Plc.* The Service of the Commission for the Protection of Competition received, (...)

The Italian Administrative Court of first instance orders the recommencement of the awarding of a public selection procedure for a breach of disclosure duty in the telecommunications sector (Telecom Italia / Fastweb / Vitrociset / Consip)
University of London - School of Economics Birkbeck College
On the 13th of May 2014, the Italian Administrative Court of first instance (the “Court”) held a judgment against a Joint-venture that is formed between Fastweb S.p.A. (“Fastweb”) and Vitrociset S.p.A. (“Vitrociset”) for a breach of disclosure duties relating to technical specifications. (...)

The Netherlands Competition Authority finds that the proposed acquisition may lead to restrictions for other companies on the use of the fiber-optic cable network (KPN / Reggefiber)
Netherlands Authority for Consumers & Markets (ACM) (The Hague)
Further investigation needed into planned acquisition of Reggefiber by KPN* The Netherlands Authority for Consumers and Markets (ACM) will launch a more detailed investigation into the planned acquisition of Dutch fiber-optic company Reggefiber by Dutch telecom provider KPN. In 2008, ACM (...)

The Algerian Competition Authority clears acquisition of control over the country’s largest mobile phone operator by the Government’s national investment fund (Orascom Telecom Algérie / Fonds National d’Investissement)
Clifford Chance (Paris)
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Orrick, Herrington & Sutcliffe (Paris)
On 18 April 2014, VimpelCom announced that it and Global Telecom Holding S.A.E. (GTH) had signed a share purchase agreement for the sale by GTH of a 51% interest in Orascom Telecom Algérie (OTA), which includes Djezzy, the largest mobile-phone operator in Algeria, to the Fonds National (...)

The South African Competition Commission awaits notification of a merger in the telecom sector (Vodacome / Neotel)
Primerio (Washington)
Telecom adversaries to remain “principled” in their competing bids for 4G spectrum* The telecoms are at it again, and MTN and Vodacom find themselves close together once more. Last October, we reported on their being jointly targeted by competitor Cell C for predatory “on-net” pricing. Today, (...)

The Cypriot Commission for the Protection of Competition receives notification of a merger in the telecommunication sector (Rocket Internet Germany / MTN Dubai)
Commission for the Protection of Competition of the Republic of Cyprus (Nicosia)
Notification of concentration regarding the acquisition of share capital of Middle East Internet Holding S.a.r.l. by MTN (Dubai) Ltd* The Service of the Commission for the Protection of Competition received on behalf of Rocket Internet GmbH and MTN (Dubai) Ltd notification of a proposed (...)

The Cypriot Commission for the Protection of Competition receives notification of an international acquisition in the telecom sector (Africa Internet / Millicom)
Commission for the Protection of Competition of the Republic of Cyprus (Nicosia)
Notification of a concentration concerning the joint acquisition of the share capital of Africa Internet Holding GmbH by Mobile Telephone Networks Holdings (Pty) Ltd, Millicom International Cellular S.A. and Rocket Internet Holding GmbH* The Commission for the Protection of Competition (...)

The French Competition Authority clears an acquisition of sole control in the telecommunications sector (SFR / Numéricable)
French Competition Authority (Paris)
Press release published on the official website of the French Competition Authority. The Autorité de la concurrence clears the acquisition of Numéricâble by Altice, its minority shareholder* The Autorité de la concurrence has cleared the acquisition of the Numéricâble group, a cable network (...)

The EU General Court confirms that two big tech companies parties to a merger are not dominant in the internet visual communications market and rejects interoperability issues raised by appellants (Microsoft / Skype)
Ashurst (Milan)
EU Court upholds the Commission’s decision on the Microsoft/Skype deal* On 11 December 2013 the EU’s General Court (the “Court”) handed down its ruling concerning Microsoft’s acquisition of Skype. The Court held that the Commission rightly considered that the transaction does not restrict (...)

The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission does not oppose a proposed acquisition in the market for the supply of fixed line broadband services (TransACT Capital Communications / NBN)
Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (Canberra)
ACCC to not oppose NBN Co’s proposed acquisition of TransACT’s fibre to the premises network* The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission will not oppose the proposed acquisition of TransACT Capital Communications Pty Ltd’s (TransACT) fibre to the premises network (TransACT FTTP network) (...)

The New Zealand Commerce Commission receives an application seeking clearance to acquire the management rights to 700 MHz radio spectrum (Vodafone)
New Zealand Commerce Commission (Wellington)
Press releases published on New Zealand Commerce Commission Vodafone seeks clearance to acquire radio spectrum* The Commerce Commission has received an application from Vodafone New Zealand Limited seeking clearance to acquire the management rights to 700 MHz radio spectrum. The Crown is (...)

The Portuguese Competition Authority issues clearance decision with remedies in Phase I (Kento Unitel Sonaecom/ZON Optimus)
Sérvulo (Lisbon)
On the August 26, 2013, the Portuguese Competition Authority (“PCA”) issued a Decision of Non-opposition, with remedies, regarding a concentration notified in February 1, 2013 (under every notification criteria under article 37 (1) of the Portuguese Competition Law – Lei n.º 19/2012, of May 8, (...)

The Finnish Competition Authority decides to investigate the market impact of an acquisition on the pay-TV market (DNA & Plus TV)
Finnish Competition and Consumer Authority (Helsinki)
FCCA to investigate the market impact of deal between DNA and PlusTV* The Finnish Competition and Consumer Authority (FCCA) decided on 24 June 2013 to initiate further proceedings concerning an acquisition that will give DNA Oy a controlling interest in Digi TV Plus Oy. Both parties of the (...)

The Brazilian Competition Authority analyses two international mergers with intense cooperation with EU DG-Competition indicating a new approach for international merger review in Brazil (Mach / Syniverse / Munksjö / Ahlstrom)
OECD - Competition Division (Paris)
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Vinicius Marques de Carvalho Advogados (VMCA) (Sao Paulo)
CADE has recently analyzed two international mergers with intense cooperation with DG-Competition. In fact, these two cases reflect the advances brought by new Competition Law. In the previous law, CADE would only analyze cases after their approval by other jurisdictions. With the institution (...)

The Finnish Competition and Consumer Authority approves acquisition but attached conditions (Elisa & PPO)
Finnish Competition and Consumer Authority (Helsinki)
FCCA approved deal between Elisa and PPO but attached conditions* The Finnish Competition and Consumer Authority (FCCA) decided on 24 April 2013 to approve the deal in which Elisa Corporation acquires control of the companies PPO-Yhtiöt Oy, Kymen Puhelin Oy and Telekarelia Oy. However, the FCCA (...)

The Portuguese Competition Authority is due to announce its decision on a prospective merger in the telecommunications sector (Zon Multimédia / Optimus)
Luís Silva Morais (Lisbon)
The Portuguese Competition Authority ("Autoridade da Concorrência", hereinafter ’ADC’) is due to decide on a prospective merger announced on 14 December 2012 by a joint communiqué issued by Sonaecom SGPS, SA ("Sonaecom") and by Kento Holding Limited and Jadeium BV ("Kento / Jadeium") as the main (...)

The EU Commission adopts a decision declaring a merger compatible with the internal market and the functioning of the EEA (Hutchison 3G Austria / Orange Austria)
RBB Economics (Brussels)
H3G/Orange Austria – Commission starts using UPP* On 24 July, the Commission published the non-confidential version of the decision in the Hutchison 3G Austria/Orange Austria case. The case, cleared subject to commitments following a Phase II investigation, represents a significant development (...)

The Dutch Competition Authority grants a permit to telecom operator for the acquisition of four fiber-optic providers (KPN / Concepts ICT / Edutel / XMS / KickXL)
Mintz Levin Cohn Ferris Glovsky and Popeo PC (New York)
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European Commission (Brussels)
Introduction On 16 October 2012, the Netherlands Competition Authority ("NMa") granted a permit for a proposed concentration between KPN B.V. ("KPN") and Concepts ICT Holding B.V. ("Concepts"), Edutel Beheer B.V. ("Edutel"), Xtra Media Services B.V. ("Xtra") and KickXL B.V. ("KickXL"). (...)

The Chinese MOFCOM enforces telecom regulations in a merger review (Wal-Mart / Yihaodian)
Ingram Yuzek Gainen Carroll & Bertolotti (New York)
The notification for the Wal-Mart/Yihaodian transaction was submitted to China’s Ministry of Commerce on 16 December 2011. It was ultimately accepted on 16 February 2012 by MOFCOM after supplementation. At the expiration of the Phase III, or extended Phase II, period, on 13 August 2012, MOFCOM (...)

The EU Commission clears a merger between two Austrian mobile networks operators subject to remedies (Hutchison 3G / Orange Austria)
Keystone Strategy (London)
The long-standing discussion about how competition in telecom markets should be best managed (that is, through a mix of traditional regulatory mechanisms – like access price regulation – and ex-post competition policy) has recently drawn new life from the debate about the need to provide the (...)

The Chinese MOFCOM imposes conditions on a transaction in the smartphone sector (Google / Motorola Mobility)
Ingram Yuzek Gainen Carroll & Bertolotti (New York)
The notification for Google‘s acquisition of Motorola Mobility was submitted to China’s Ministry of Commerce on 30 September 2011. It was ultimately accepted on 21 November 2011 by MOFCOM after supplementation. At the expiration of the Phase III, or extended Phase II, period, on 19 May 2012, (...)

The Belgian Competition Council fines a telecommunications company € 75,000 for providing incomplete response to questionnaire in merger case (Belgacom)
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
On 5 April 2012, the Competition Council imposed a fine of € 75,000 on Belgian telecommunications company Belgacom for providing an incomplete response to a request for information in the context of the merger review of Belgacom’s acquisition of The Phone House. During the review of the (...)

The Belgian Competition Council fines a telecommunications company € 75,000 for providing incomplete response to questionnaire in merger case (Belgacom)
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
On 5 April 2012, the Competition Council imposed a fine of € 75,000 on Belgian telecommunications company Belgacom for providing an incomplete response to a request for information in the context of the merger review of Belgacom’s acquisition of The Phone House. During the review of the (...)

The Hungarian Competition Office approves the creation of a joint venture for mobile phone services (MPVI Mobil)
Philip Morris (Budapest)
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Kinstellar (Budapest)
The newly established joint venture company, MPVI, which was approved by the HCO intends to provide mobile radio telephone services on the basis of its right to use a frequency use. The Hungarian mobile telephone market is currently dominated by three key players (Magyar Telekom, Telenor and (...)

The Portuguese Competition Authority considers mere coordinated contacts between two companies can consubstantiate a merger (Zon / Ar Telecom concentration)
Morais Leitão, Galvão Teles, Soares da Silva (Lisbon)
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Morais Leitão, Galvão Teles, Soares da Silva (Lisbon)
I. Introduction On December 9, 2011, the Portuguese Competition Authority (PCA) was notified of a concentration under which Zon TV Cabo Portugal (Zon) notified the acquisition of a group of assets, specifically the residential customers of AR Telecom – Acesso e Redes de Telecomunicações (AR (...)

The Polish Competition Authority fines cable TV operator for providing incorrect information in merger control proceedings (UPC / Aster)
Dentons (Warsaw)
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Dentons
On January 30, 2012, the Chairperson of the Polish Office for Competition and Consumer Protection (the UOKiK) issued a decision in a case relating to the provision of incorrect information by UPC Polska sp. z o.o. (UPC) in merger control proceedings concerning the acquisition of Aster sp. z (...)

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