A merger Rogers Communications proposed with rival Shaw Communications moved a step closer after the companies finalised an agreement to sell Freedom Mobile to Quebecor’s subsidiary Videotron, a move designed to allay regulator competition concerns.
In a statement, Rogers Communications and Shaw Communications revealed they had struck a definitive agreement for the sale Freedom Mobile to Videotron, owned by telecoms and media group Quebecor, and it was now subject to regulatory approvals and the closing of their own deal.
The companies first proposed the sale of Shaw Communications’ Freedom Mobile business in June to ease competition concerns and therefore get a green light from their merger, however terms were not finalised.
In their latest statement, the operators explained the definitive agreement included spectrum, retail sites and Freedom Mobile’s customers, in a CAD2.9 billion deal ($2.3 billion).
Through the agreement, the combined business of Videotron and Freedom Mobile will be well-positioned to launch a competitive national 5G offering, the duo argued.
“Accordingly, the parties believe the Rogers-Shaw Transaction should now be approved.”
Rogers Communications agreed a CAD26 billion deal to acquire Shaw Communications in March 2021, but the deal met with staunch opposition from the country’s Competition Bureau and the Minister of Innovation, Science and Economic Development over fears it will decrease competition in the wireless market and increase costs for Canadians.
Tony Staffieri, president and CEO of Rogers Communications, stated the agreement with Quebecor “brings us one step closer to completing our merger with Shaw”, adding it looked forward to gaining clearance “so that we can start delivering its significant long-term benefits to Canadian consumers and businesses, including improved network resiliency”.Subscribe to our daily newsletter Back