Canada’s Competition bureau plans to oppose Rogers’ $26-billion takeover of Shaw

The two Canadian telcom companies plan to oppose the bureau’s application

Canada’s Commissioner of Competition is reportedly planning to oppose the $26-billion takeover of Shaw by Rogers at the Competition Tribunal. The two telecom companies have come together to make a joint statement on the matter.

The application from the Commissioner of Competition, Matthew Boswell. The two companies are planning to oppose it, following notification of Boswell’s intention to file the application late this week. The application seeks to block the proposed merger of Rogers and Shaw, homogenizing two of Canada’s largest cable networking companies.

Rogers and Shaw, along with the Shaw family trust, agree to extend the merger deadline. The deadline is now set for July 31st rather than June 13th.

Rogers and Shaw remain committed to the transaction, which is in the best interests of Canada and Canadians because of the significant long-term benefits it will bring for consumers, businesses and the economy,” the joint statement reads. “The companies have offered to address concerns regarding the possible impact of the transaction on Canada’s competitive wireless market by proposing the full divesture of Shaw’s wireless business, Freedom Mobile.”

Freedom has roughly two million wireless customers across Ontario, Alberta, and British Columbia. It’s credited with driving down cellphone bills throughout previous years. A number of firms and entities have also expressed interest in the acquisition. This includes Globalive Capital’s Anthony Lacavera, who offered Rogers $3.75-billion for Freedom. Lacavera is also said to have called the sales process a “non-competitive sham.”

In March, Boswell is said to have received a letter from Lacavera, accusing Rogers of running a “closed and secretive sales process.”

As part of a press release from Rogers and Shaw, the two companies detail benefits of the $26 billion deal. A $2.5 billion investment is being made to build 5G networking in Western Canada until 2027. $1 billion is also being invested in the networking of rural and Indigenous communities.

Source: The Globe and Mail