France: Orange abandons merger plans

Onetime monopoly Orange said it has abandoned any plans to strike a merger deal that would further shake up France’s wireless industry, according to reports.

Orange’s decision puts a wrinkle in a long line of recent wireless deals, beginning with the launch of new market entrant Iliad in 2012. Recently, Bouygues Telecom lost a bidding war with Numericable to acquire SFR.

Following the SFR buyout, Orange said it was eyeing possible deals to further consolidate the industry. Sources said the company was speaking with Bouygues Telecom.

But in a statement made Wednesday, Orange said that it “has examined the possibilities of participating in an operation that would lead to consolidation in the French telecoms market, and believes that it cannot pursue this avenue at the present time as the conditions that the Group has set have not been met.”

According to reports, the news sent shares tumbling across the industry.

Full content: Reuters

Want more news? Subscribe to CPI’s free daily newsletter for more headlines and updates on antitrust developments around the world.