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UK watchdog says Cellnex-CK Hutchison tower deal raises competition concerns By Reuters

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© Reuters. FILE PHOTO: A telecom antenna of Spain’s telecoms infrastructures agency Cellnex are seen underneath predominant telecom tower, often known as “Piruli”, in Madrid, Spain, March 10, 2016. REUTERS/Sergio Perez

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(Reuters) – Britain’s competition watchdog stated on Thursday a UK telecom tower deal between Spain’s Cellnex and Hong Kong-based CK Hutchison might elevate “important competition concerns” and risked larger cellular fees.

The Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) stated its investigation discovered that CK Hutchison ought to have offered its passive infrastructure property, together with towers and masts, to an alternate purchaser moderately than market chief Cellnex.

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Cellnex final yr agreed to purchase 24,600 telecom towers throughout Europe from CK Hutchison, which owns the Three cellular community within the UK, for 10 billion euros ($11.31 billion).

“CK Hutchison had a variety of choices to commercialise these property and the deal with Cellnex was not the one possibility out there to it to pursue its broader industrial targets,” the CMA stated in an announcement on Thursday.

The regulator stated the sale might end in larger costs or decrease high quality companies for cellular community operators, with a knock-on opposed impression for customers of cellular networks throughout the UK.

Cellnex stated it was reviewing the CMA findings and would reply with any “sensible different treatments” the corporate needs the regulator to think about.

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It added that it continued to imagine the deal would enhance cellular protection, together with 5G, throughout the UK.

CK Hutchison stated it strongly disagreed with CMA’s findings and could be responding to the problems raised by the regulator.

The CMA launched an inquiry into the proposed deal in May and referred it for an in-depth investigation in July.

($1 = 0.8844 euros)

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