Commission approves Nokia's Alcatel-Lucent merger

The European Commission (EC) has approved the proposed acquisition of Alcatel-Lucent by Nokia.

The EC concluded that the transaction would not raise competition concerns, as the companies are not close competitors. It added that “a number of strong competitors will remain active after the transaction”. 

Despite the merged entity having combined market shares around or above 30% for several specific types of equipment, the overlaps between the two companies' activities are limited. 

“Indeed, Nokia has a strong presence in the European Economic Area, where Alcatel-Lucent is a small player, and conversely Alcatel-Lucent has a strong presence in North America, where Nokia’s activities are rather limited,” it said.

“Finally, the Commission’s investigation did not find that the transaction would make it harder for new or small players to enter and expand in the market."

The EC noted other strong players on the market such as Ericsson, Huawei and ZTE. “Although ZTE and Samsung currently have small market shares, the Commission considered that those market shares do not fully reflect the competitive importance of their offerings”, it said.  

The EC said it has concluded that the transaction would not significantly change the market structure to make coordination between the remaining players easier.