ACCC gives the green light to Vodafone and Hutchison merger

ACCC gives the green light to Vodafone and Hutchison merger

Telcos yet to finalise details of merging their distribution models


The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) has announced it will not oppose a proposed merger between telcos, Vodafone and Hutchison.

The merger between the two, which was announced in February of this year, was scrutinised over three months by the ACCC before the regulatory body decided that “it is unlikely to substantially lessen competition in the relevant markets”.

According to a statement released by Vodafone, the company is pleased by the decision and will move quickly to finalise the merger.

“The companies intend to complete the merger transaction within the next two weeks and form a 50:50 joint-venture that will be known as Vodafone Hutchison Australia (VHA),” the statement said.

“All respective network arrangements, caps and plans, retail outlets and customer service capabilities will remain unchanged for the foreseeable future.”

In reaching its decision the ACCC said that Australian customers and services would be negatively affected if the two companies were not allowed to merge.

“Absent the merger, the parties are unlikely to sustain the significant investment in their mobile networks to provide competitive high speed data services, such as mobile broadband,” the ACCC statement said.

A spokesperson from Vodafone refused to elaborate on how the two company’s distribution systems would change under the merger, and reiterated the company’s earlier statements that the existing services would be maintained for the foreseeable future.

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