The European Commission has approved unconditionally under the EU Merger Regulation the proposed acquisition of Sky by Comcast, concluding that the transaction would raise no competition concerns in Europe.
Comcast and Sky are mainly active in different markets in Austria, Germany, Ireland, Italy, the UK and Spain. They compete with each other only to a limited extent, mainly in the acquisition of TV content and in the wholesale supply of basic pay-TV channels.
The Commission found that the proposed transaction would lead to only a limited increase in Sky’s existing share of the markets for the acquisition of TV content, as well as in the market for the wholesale supply of TV channels in the relevant Member States.
Given that the merging companies are mainly active at different levels of the market, the Commission’s assessment focused on whether, as a result of the proposed transaction:
Based on the results of its market investigation, the Commission concluded that the proposed transaction would raise no competition concerns.
Comcast’s offer to acquire Sky comes as a counter-bid to an offer by Twenty-First Century Fox.
On April 7th 2017, the Commission also cleared unconditionally Twenty-First Century Fox’s offer for Sky.
In a Statement, the Independent Committee of Sky said it welcomed the announcement, and noted that Comcast has now satisfied all of the pre-conditions outlined in its announcement dated April 25th 2018 and, under Rule 24.1 of the UK Takeover Code, has until Friday July 13th to post its Offer Document to Sky shareholders.
A further announcement will be made as and when appropriate.