Deutsche not compromising on assets for UK mega merger
Deutsche Telekom has said it is unwilling to make concessions to Ofcom as the regulator decides the fate of the mega-merger between Deutsche’s T-Mobile and Orange.
Deutsche Telekom COO and head of the European mobile division, Hamid Akhavan, revealed to an FT conference in the UK that the carrier would “absolutely not” consider relinquishing spectrum in order to win the regulator’s approval.
Orange and T-Mobile own the lion’s share of spectrum in the 1800 MHz range and it is anticipated that rivals O2 and Vodafone will lobby Ofta to force the new JV to relinquish some spectrum on competition grounds.
The merger of Orange and T-Mobile would form the largest UK mobile carrier, with 37% market share by revenue.
But Ofcom CEO Ed Richards has flagged its intention to closely scrutinize the transaction due to the substantially increased maker power of the proposed JV. Orange and T-Mobile are currently ranked the third and fourth largest mobile operators in the UK.
Akhavan, however was optimistic that competition regulators would approve the merger, which was finalized earlier this month.