EU Asked to Drop Investigation into E-Plus/O2 Merger
Published on: 10th Jan 2014
By: Ian Mansfield
The European Commission has confirmed that it has received another request to drop its review the planned merger of two German mobile networks.
Germany's Competition Authority, Bundeskartellamt has reminded the Commission to allow it to look into the planned merger of E-Plus and O2 as an internal matter rather than one for the wider European market.
The letter comes a few weeks after the EU said that it would look into the merger, which would see the German market reduced to three major networks. The EU is concerned that consolidation in Germany could trigger similar moves in other European countries where there is pressure to reduce costs in the face of a weak economic situation.
"Following the opening of an in-depth investigation into the Telefonica Deutschland/E-Plus merger, Germany has confirmed its request to refer the case to its national competition authority," Antoine Colombani, a Commission spokesman told the Wall Street Journal.
Under the terms of the rmerger, KPN is selling its stake in E-Plus to Telefonica Deutschland for EUR5 billion, and a 20.5% stake in the merged company.
The total implied transaction valuation for E-Plus is EUR 8.55 billion.
On the web: Wall Street Journal