02/03/2010

T-Mobile gets the go-ahead to bed Orange

The European Commission has given the approval for T-Mobile (UK) a subsidiary of Deutsch Telekom and Orange (UK) part of France Telecom to merge. The combined mobile network will be the largest in the UK with around 29.5m customers.

The joint company is expected to make large savings in both operational and capital spending.

There are conditions to the deal, they'll still have to support 3 (who use Orange for back-up coverage in the 2G space) and they will have to release some spectrum (2 x 10 MHz by Sept 2013 and2 x 5MHz by Sep 2015) which is likely to be auctioned off.

The Orange and T-Mobile branding will be maintained for 18 months, though they will be combined. If they can leverage the increased customer base and shared network resources, the new combined company may give O2 (Telefonica) and Vodafone some hard competition.
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