Telefonica-Canal Plus anti-trust probe

The Spanish competition watchdog CNMC has launched an in-depth antitrust investigation into Telefonica’s acquisition of pay-TV company Canal Plus amidst signs of lack of competition in the market.

CNMC underlines that the deal “could significantly hinder competition in the markets related to pay-TV, audiovisual content and electronic communications services”.

In May, the media group Prisa agreed to sell 56 per cent of DTS, known as Canal Plus in Spain, to Telefonica in a deal that would give it full control over the TV group. With the deal, Telefonica would become the number one in pay TV with more than 3 million subscribers, way ahead of Vodafone-ONO with 700,000 customers, and controlling over 80 per cent of all pay TV revenues. For Vodafone, this may give Telefonica a greater power to negotiate exclusive content contracts at better prices.

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