T-Mobile UK and Orange UK Agree to Merge Operations
Today Deutsche Telecom and France Telecom agreed to merge their respective operations in the United Kingdom to form the country's largest mobile network operator. T-Mobile UK and Orange UK will form a 50-50 joint venture and will be larger than O2 and Vodafone (nos. 1 and 2, respectively) once the merger is complete. The deal will close by the end of October and will then be subject to regulatory approval. The combined entity will have about 28.4 million subscribers, representing 37% of the UK market.
Number 4 Moving Up!
EU regulators should block merger
O2 (Telefonica): 27%
Vodafone UK: 25%
Orange (France Telecom): 22%
T-Mobile UK (Deutsche Telekom): 15%
3 (Hutchison Whampoa): 8%
EU regulators should not allow two multi national companies -- particularly one that is a close third in UK market share -- to contract currently healthy wireless competition in the UK.