Telcos appeal against Telefónica’s Canal Plus takeover

Telecommunications companies Vodafone and Orange have submitted appeals in Spain’s High Court over rival Telefónica’s takeover of pay-television broadcaster Canal Plus, according to daily newspaper El Economista​.

The separate appeals were reportedly filed on June 30, the deadline for such submissions, and the court must now decide whether they are admissible, allowing a formal complaint to be filed.

In April, Spain’s competition regulator, the Comisión Nacional de los Mercados y La Competencia, gave the green light to the acquisition.

The announcement came after Telefónica in July 2014 secured a 100-per-cent shareholding in Canal Plus through its acquisition of Mediaset España’s 22-per-cent stake for €295m. Telefónica had already agreed a deal to acquire a 56-per-cent stake in Canal Plus from media company Prisa for €750m, raising its interest to 78 per cent.

As part of the deal approved by the regulator, Telefónica’s competitors can access a maximum of 50 per cent of the ‘premium’ channels that make up the group wholesale offer. However, Vodafone and Orange have asked for the figure to be increased to 75 per cent on an interim basis.