The Autorité de la concurrence has decided to open an in-depth investigation into the acquisition of SFR by the Altice Group
On 4 June 2014, the Numericable Group, a subsidiary of the Altice Group, filed a merger notification to the Autorité de la Concurrence relating to its plan to acquire SFR from the Vivendi Group. After several discussions with the Autorité's staff, the file was declared complete on 24 June 2014.
After examining of the matter, and following an initial consultation of stakeholders in the marketplace, the Autorité considers that the transaction raises serious competition concerns, thus requiring an in-depth investigation (phase 2).
During the course of the phase 2 investigation, the Autorité will engage in extensive consultations of stakeholders in the marketplace. It will also consider the opinions of the telecom (Autorité de régulation des communications électroniques et des postes (ARCEP)) and media (Conseil supérieur de l'audiovisuel (CSA)) regulators. If necessary, the Autorité will also consult stakeholders in the marketplace with respect to remedies that may be deemed necessary should the merger impede competition.
In-depth investigations must be performed in principle within 65 working days from the date of the start of phase 2 under the applicable law. This time-period can be extended if necessary, for example for commitment negotiations or in order to take new facts into account.