Liberty Global and Vodafone win EU approval for merger

Liberty Global and Vodafone are to win EU approval for the merger of their Netherlands businesses.

Liberty Global and Vodafone are set to win EU antitrust approval for a plan to merge their Dutch operations after minor concessions to the regulators were offered.

The companies, which need to expand to compete with the Netherlands' former monopoly KPN, offered the concessions on July 12. 

No details were provided by either party of the likely agreement.

The merged company will be the second-largest telecoms company in the Netherlands. Liberty's Ziggo is the largest cable TV operator in the country, while Vodafone is the second-largest mobile network operator.

The EU competition authority is scheduled to make a decision on the deal by the 3rd of Aug. 

Reuters report that Vodafone will pay €1 billion (£843.4 million) to U.S. billionaire John Malone's group to equalise its stake in the merged company.

Spun off from Liberty Media Corp., media mogul John Malone’s Liberty Global is the largest international cable company, with operations in 14 countries. The London company has been shifting focus to Europe, with a series of large acquisitions, including U.K.’s Virgin Media Inc. and Dutch cable operator Ziggo NV, seeking to profit from rising demand for bundles of television, broadband and telephone and mobile services.

Liberty Global and  Vodafone are to win EU approval for merger of their Netherlands businesses. 

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