Deutsche Telekom’s efforts to merge its Dutch business with local mobile rival Tele2 ran into problems Thursday, September 13, after the European Commission (EC) complained that a tie-up would lead to a reduction in competition and potentially mean higher prices for Dutch consumers, reported Telecom Paper.
The Commission’s preliminary investigation, already extended in June, found that the merger could have negative consequences for competition in the mobile retail market, especially in the consumer segment. The merger of the third- and fourth-largest mobile operators would reduce the Netherlands to three players. T-Mobile and Tele2 have also played a challenger role, introducing sharply priced and unlimited data offers in the past year, helping to intensify competition on the mobile market.
T-Mobile Netherlands said it was surprised the Commission had not recognised the specific characteristics of the Dutch market and the benefits of the merger, which would lead to the combined company still being number three on the mobile market with an around 25% share of customers.
Full Content: Telecompaper