On July 26, 2021, the European Commission has approved, under the EU Merger Regulation, the acquisition of a newly created joint venture by Proximus NV and Eurofiber NV, all of Belgium. The joint venture will roll out and operate a passive open Fiber-To-The-Home network in certain parts of Wallonia.
Proximus is the incumbent telecommunications operator in Belgium, and a provider of a full range of wholesale and retail telecommunications services.
Eurofiber is an operator of electronic communication services and networks in Belgium, with a specific focus on connectivity services and networks over fiber to business customers and service providers.
The Commission concluded that the proposed acquisition would raise no horizontal competition concerns, given the very limited increment in market share on the wholesale broadband access and leased lines markets by the joint venture.
The Commission also found that the vertical relationship between the upstream wholesale broadband access and leased lines services, and the downstream retail and wholesale telecommunications services would be unproblematic given the very limited market position of the joint venture on the broadband access and leased lines markets. In addition, Proximus and the joint venture are both subject to ex ante regulation on the broadband access market. The transaction was examined under the normal merger review procedure.