The European Commission has approved Telia Company’s $957 million (€868.6m) acquisition of Bonnier Broadcasting, including TV4, MTV and C More.
Telia, the Swedish telco, says its networks and broad sales channels combined with Bonnier Broadcasting’s popular media content creates the possibility to give customers and viewers new experiences and services to enjoy wherever they are. The combined entities will secure a foundation for Nordic quality content and create new revenue streams. The acquisition is expected to generate synergies as per 2020 with a full run-rate of SEK 600 million in 2022.
“This is a milestone for Telia Company. We become pioneers in the Nordics by creating convergence that can meet customers’ demands for high quality connectivity, reliable streaming and great content,” said Christian Luiga, acting President and CEO of Telia Company, and continues: “We’ve had the most satisfied TV customers for five consecutive years in Sweden. This transaction naturally enables us to improve even further. I look forward to closing this transaction and to start co-operating for real with our new colleagues to become the natural choice for content and communication services in the Nordics and Baltics.”
Marie Ehrling, Chair of the Board, Telia Company, also welcomes the European Commission’s approval. “Today’s decision means that also the European Commission sees the benefits for consumers of combining Telia Company and Bonnier Broadcasting. It has been a long and thorough process and a new phase will now begin where Telia Company will include media in its business in order to create more value for customers and shareholders. This acquisition creates a strong Nordic player who can compete with international corporations who are very active in the Nordics. As a media owner, Telia Company will ensure that continued editorial independence is upheld vis-à-vis the owners, Board and management.”
The integration of Bonnier Broadcasting, with its roughly 1,200 employees in Sweden, Finland and Denmark, into Telia Company will begin when the transaction is expected to close on December 2nd. TV4, C More and MTV will be part of Telia Company’s newly established business area for media. Casten Almqvist, who is currently CEO of Bonnier Broadcasting, will become responsible for the new business area which will also include Telia Company’s current media operations.
“When TV4, MTV and C More join forces with Telia Company, it will strengthen our possibility of bringing quality drama, sport, news and entertainment to users in Sweden and Finland, further. I look forward to combining the respective strengths of Telia Company and Bonnier Broadcasting. Together we will bring the experience of quality content to a new level,” said Casten Almqvist.