Tiscali Acquisition By Carphone Warehouse Given All-clear By EU

The European Commission (EC) has finally given green signal to the much-awaited Carphone Warehouse's acquisition of cash-strapped Italian telecom company Tiscali's UK operations, asserting that the acquisition wouldn't affect competition at all.

The £236 million takeover of the internet service provider has found to be in line with the EU's antitrust laws, and the antitrust authorities have eventually cleared way for the acquisition on 30th June.

Following the takeover, Carphone Warehouse's TalkTalk would become UK's largest ISP with as many as 4.25 million residential subscribers. The deal was inked back in May this year, but both the companies had to wait for the official approval from the EU's antitrust authorities to start working on it.

Paving the way for the acquisition, the Commission said in a statement, “The new entity will continue to face competition from a number of strong players, especially BT, as well as from a number of strong alternative operators, including those based on the cable platform”.

In addition to this, the EC also emphasised the soaring competition to fixed broadband connections that is being posed by the fast growing mobile broadband market.

In a related news, Carphone Warehouse's chief exec Charles Dunstone asserted that the company is planning to split its TalkTalk and Best Buy Europe retail division into separate businesses.

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Our Comments

Consolidation in the telecommunications market is only starting. Expect more to come especially as T-Mobile appears to be suffering tremendously as rivals start considering potentially biding for the ailing mobile phone network. And if T-mobile gets acquired surely Hutchinson Whampoa would be in a rather delicate situation.

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