Israeli operator Cellcom was granted permission to purchase domestic rival Golan Telecom, after local authorities found no competition risk related to a tie-up.
In a statement, the Ministry of Communications announced the deal was approved by Minister Yoaz Hendel following “a thorough and in-depth examination of the application to merge the companies” and after recommendation from “the professional echelon in the ministry”.
The authority stated “the move will not harm the level of competitiveness in the communications market” and it will focus on maintaining a balanced playing field.
There are some stipulations, one of which involves maintaining mobile service for Golan Telecom customers.
In a separate statement, Cellcom said it was evaluating the requirements set.
Local newspaper Globes reported completion of the deal was expected in the upcoming days, with the price set at up to ILS750 million ($220.3 million).
Cellcom CEO Avi Gabbay told Globes Golan Telecom will continue operating as an independent player.
The combination will create the largest operator in Israel: GSMA Intelligence figures showed they had more than 3.6 million mobile connections at end Q2.