The combined company will create a strong alternative to the incumbents for Dutch consumers and businesses. However, as a result of the merger the number of mobile operators in the country will be reduced from four to three, KPN, Vodafone and T-Mobile/Tele2.
The merger between Tele2 NL and T-Mobile NL was announced on December 15, 2017, and has since gone through a regulatory process including a Phase II investigation by the EC. Following constructive discussions between the two merging companies and the EC, the merger was approved today with no requirement to offer remedies.
“I am delighted that the EC has unconditionally approved our merger in the Netherlands. We are excited to partner with T-Mobile to form a strong customer champion which will accelerate competition and investment in the Dutch market,” said Anders Nilsson, President and CEO of Tele2.
“Our partnership with T-Mobile will create a force to be reckoned with in the Netherlands, with Tele2’s strong brand and fixed assets complementing T-Mobile’s world-class mobile network. I am immensely proud of the performance of the Tele2 team, who have continued driving the business with great energy. Now our focus will be on ensuring a successful integration for both customers and employees,” added Jon James, CEO of Tele2 Netherlands.
The merger is expected to close at the beginning of January 2019. The combined company will continue to operate the Tele2 brand in the Netherlands. Tele2 will hold a 25 percent share in the combined company and receive a cash payment of around EUR190 million upon closing, subject to standard closing adjustments.