Advanced Television

EC probes Orange, MásMóvil merger

April 4, 2023

From David Del Valle in Madrid

The European Commission (EC) has opened an in-depth investigation into the potential merger between Orange and MásMóvil on the grounds that the operation could lead to higher prices and affect the quality of services. Brussels will now have 90 working days (until August 21st) to conclude whether the combined operation would hinder competition.

“The transaction would reduce the number of network operators in Spain, thereby eliminating an innovative and significant rival. This could lead to higher prices and lower quality of telecom services for customers,” the EC said in a statement. “As result of the transaction, Orange and MasMovil would have the ability and incentive to restrict access of virtual operators to wholesale mobile network and wholesale fixed network access services.”

In a rebuttal statement, Orange said: “This transaction is beneficial both for Spanish consumers and the telecom sector as it will ensure the sustainable roll out of 5G and fiber on a wider scale within a very competitive market.”

The merger is valued at €18.6 billion, out of which €10.9 billion corresponds to MásMóvil, the fourth largest operator in Spain, and €7.7 billion to Orange, the second largest operator.

Categories: Articles, Business, M&A, Telco

Tags: , ,