The European Commission (EC) approved T-Mobile Austria’s proposed acquisition of cable company UPC Austria without conditions, declaring the transaction raises no competition concerns.
In a statement, the EC said the companies’ activities and assets are largely complementary, with UPC’s main activities related to fixed telecoms, while T-Mobile “is mainly active in mobile communications”.
Approval comes after the EC extended the review period for the deal in late June, following T-Mobile offering concessions to get the green light.
The mobile operator announced its deal to acquire the cable company from Liberty Global in December 2017, with the aim of creating an integrated provider of mobile and fixed services.
It was not clear what concessions the regulators asked for, but with approval now secured, they have clearly done the trick.
The EC said it examined the impact the proposed transaction would have in the “limited number of markets” in Austria where the activities of both companies overlap, particularly where they are active in provisioning internet access services for residential customers, but found the impact would be limited.
In addition, the merged entity “would continue to face significant competition from other players such as incumbent Telekom Austria and Hutchison Drei Austria”.
The commission added the merged company would also not be able to “use its market power to shut out or marginalise competitors” offering bundled multiplay services.