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It seems that T-Mobile is getting permission from the European Commission to take over the Dutch branch of Tele2. The Commission is expected to complete its investigation into the takeover on 30 November and to indicate fairly soon afterwards whether it will be allowed to take place.

This is reported by Reuters press agency on the basis of a number of unspecified sources, familiar with the subject. According to the sources, the European Commission approves the takeover and does not impose any further conditions. In some cases, this is done and the competition authorities require the acquiring company to divest certain parts of the business.

Take-over plans

Last December it was announced that T-Mobile wanted to take over the Dutch branch of Tele2. It was worth 190 million euros and would give Tele2 a share of T-Mobile NL. The two companies wanted to acquire the company in order to better compete with the other two suppliers: KPN and VodafoneZiggo.

Five months ago, however, it was announced that the European Commission had opened an investigation into the takeover plans. The Commission’s concern is that if the Dutch market shrinks and there are only three players with their own network, this will be detrimental to competition. The result is usually price increases for consumers.

Approval unlikely?

Should there be approval, this is somewhat remarkable. In 2015, a merger between TeliaSonenera and Telenor was terminated after the European Commission imposed conditions that were too strict for the companies. In that case, too, the number of providers with their own networks fell from four to three.

At the same time, T-Mobile has already made some promises about the merger. For example, it has promised that the Tele2 subscription with unlimited mobile Internet will continue to exist. There are also certain commitments concerning the roll-out of 5G. Perhaps it is this combination that gives the European Commission confidence and yet gives its approval.

This news article was automatically translated from Dutch to give Techzine.eu a head start. All news articles after September 1, 2019 are written in native English and NOT translated. All our background stories are written in native English as well. For more information read our launch article.