It’s little surprise that when big deals are being assessed by regulators it’s the largest
companies whose voices are often the loudest. The BT and EE merger is no different, with most of the significant coverage centring on the objections of the market’s biggest players.
It’s easier to summarise what a massive company such as Vodafone or Sky thinks about a market-changing decision. Finding out the thoughts of a decent number of the small players in the market and then putting them together comprehensively is a far harder task. Nevertheless, it’s important to reflect both market segments, and it’s something we always try to do at Mobile.
The merger of these two telecoms powers is so difficult to weigh up because it affects so many different industries. It’s hard to assess what this combined giant would want to do or have the potential to do. The CEOs of EE and BT have repeatedly argued that the deal would strengthen competition within the market place, using the MVNO market and BT Openreach as examples where platforms have been successfully implemented that have boosted competition.
There are some in the market who would question whether this is actually the case. While there are numerous examples of companies using the infrastructure, the ferocity of competition they provide is debatable.
Undoubtedly, the infrastructure that these two businesses would possess would be substantial. The question that is so difficult to answer is how well others will be able to make the most of such capabilities. EE and BT both claim that the will is there, it’s whether they are able to prove it to the people that matter that will be the critical factor.