LK Shields Solicitors

Merger of Three and O2 has been given the go-ahead, but subject to conditions

The European Commission has cleared the proposed merger between Hutchison 3G (H3G) and Telefónica Ireland (O2 Ireland), subject to conditions.

Three and O2 are two of the four mobile network operators (MNOs) present in the retail mobile telecommunications services market and the wholesale market for access and call origination in Ireland. These markets are highly concentrated and the commission recognised that there are significant barriers to entry.

The proposed merger would lead to a market structure with two MNOs holding a similarly strong position, Vodafone and the merged entity, both with a market share of roughly 40 per cent, followed by a third more distant player, Eircom, with a market share close to 20 per cent…

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