Mergers: Commission approves acquisition of Telekom Romania by Orange, subject to conditions
The European Commission has approved, under the EU Merger Regulation, the proposed acquisition of Telekom Romania Communications (“TKR”) by Orange SA (“Orange”). The approval is conditional on the divestiture of TKR's 30% minority shareholding in Telekom Romania Mobile Communications (“TRMC”), which is a direct competitor of Orange.
Executive Vice-President Margrethe Vestager, in charge of competition policy, yesterday said:
“Europeans need access to fast and reliable communication services, with sufficient alternatives on the market. With this decision, and the commitments offered by Orange, the Romanian telecommunications market will continue to offer high quality communication services at competitive prices.”
Orange, through its Romanian subsidiaries, and TKR provide telecommunications services in Romania, both at the retail and the wholesale level. Orange's main activities are related to mobile telecommunications, while TKR is mainly active in fixed telecommunications and TV. TKR is indirectly controlled by Deutsche Telekom (“DT”) and owns a 30% minority stake in TRMC, one of the four main mobile operators active in Romania.
The Commission's investigation
Following its investigation the Commission found that the transaction, as initially notified, would have raised serious competition concerns on the market for retail mobile telecommunications services. In particular, Orange would have acquired TKR's 30% minority shareholding in TRMC, one of its key competitors on this market. This may have reduced Orange's incentives to compete with TRMC, would have given Orange access to commercially sensitive information about its competitor, and allowed it to block important investments by TRMC or the operator's acquisition by a strategic buyer.
In addition, the Commission investigated potential competition concerns in other markets, such as the provision of fixed-mobile convergent (“FMC”) services, the retail market for business connectivity services and the wholesale market for the supply and acquisition of TV channels.
In all these markets, the Commission found that the merged entity would continue to face significant competition from other players and customers would have sufficient alternatives. In particular with regard to FMC services, the transaction would bring benefits, allowing the merged entity to offer this type of services more efficiently.
Latest News from
ArcelorMittal and the EIB announce €280 million of funding for research and innovation supporting the steel company's decarbonisation objectives28/09/2021 09:25:00
A €280 million loan granted to ArcelorMittal by the European Investment Bank (EIB) backed by the Investment Plan for Europe will help to fund the group's European research and development programme between 2021 and 2023.
EU announces €25 million for education in crisis contexts and €140 million to support research in sustainable food systems27/09/2021 16:33:00
Speaking at the Global Citizen Live event, President of the European Commission, Ursula von der Leyen, announced that the European Union is pledging €140 million to support research in sustainable food systems and tackle food hunger via CGIAR, formerly also known as Consultative Group for International Agricultural Research, and a further €25 million for Education Cannot Wait, a global fund for the education of children in emergencies and protracted crises, in particular girls, children with disabilities, minorities and other marginalized children.
Energy Transition: Commission announces three Energy Compacts at UN High-Level Dialogue in New York27/09/2021 15:25:00
At the UN High-Level Dialogue on Energy this week in New York, Executive Vice-President for the European Green Deal, Frans Timmermans and Commissioner for Energy, Kadri Simson presented three Energy Compacts, in partnership with the International Energy Agency and the International Renewable Energy Agency.
Statement by President von der Leyen at the Global Citizen live event 'A Recovery Plan for the World'27/09/2021 14:33:00
Statement given recently (25 September 2021) by President von der Leyen at the Global Citizen live event 'A Recovery Plan for the World'.
Healthy Lifestyle: Commission launches a European-wide campaign27/09/2021 13:25:00
The Commission recently (24 September 2021) launched the HealthyLifestyle4All campaign to promote a healthy lifestyle for all, across generations and social groups, with the objective to improve the health and well-being of Europeans.
New Fasanara €250 million fintech fund anchored by the EIF to support SMEs across the EU27/09/2021 11:33:00
The European Investment Fund (EIF) thanks to the support of the Private Credit Tailored for SMEs Programme of the European Fund for Strategic Investments (EFSI), participates in the fund with €20 million to facilitate fundraising among private investors.
Stepping up legal action: Commission urges 19 Member States to implement EU digital and media laws27/09/2021 09:25:00
The Commission recently took legal action against 19 Member States failing to deliver the benefits of EU digital legislation in the area of audio-visual media and telecommunications.
Pulling the plug on consumer frustration and e-waste: Commission proposes a common charger for electronic devices24/09/2021 16:33:00
The Commission yesterday took an important step against e-waste and consumer inconvenience, caused by the prevalence of different, incompatible chargers for electronic devices.
Europeans strongly support science and technology according to new Eurobarometer survey24/09/2021 15:25:00
A new Eurobarometer survey on ‘European citizens' knowledge and attitudes towards science and technology' released yesterday shows that 9 in 10 EU citizens (86%) think that the overall influence of science and technology is positive.
Firearms: Commission refers LUXEMBOURG to the Court of Justice of the European Union for failing to transpose EU rules on acquisition and possession of firearms24/09/2021 14:33:00
The Commission yesterday decided to refer Luxembourg to the Court of Justice of the European Union for failing to notify the national measures necessary to transpose EU rules on the acquisition and possession of firearms.