Rogers-Shaw merger closing date looms, critics go all out

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The deadline to complete the largest and most controversial merger in Canadian telecom history is nearing, and critics are waging their crusade against the deal.

Industry Minister François-Philippe Champagne has not yet given final approval to go ahead with the C$26 billion merger deal, but he told an industry and technology committee meeting on Monday that he “has not made a decision yet”. “, adding that he is not close to finalizing anything and that “there will be a decision in due course.”

A final decision on the merger was to be given on 31 January, but when this did not materialise, Rogers and Shaw extended Sale deadline February 17, If a decision is not made before this deadline, Rogers says it risks huge financial losses and lawsuits from investors and Shaw.

Telecom giant still informed of Its latest earnings call raised profits by 25 percent and forecast more revenue growth, noting that its guidance will be reevaluated after the transaction with Shaw closes.

If the deal is allowed to go ahead, Rogers would acquire Shaw, and Quebecor’s Videotron subsidiary would acquire Shaw’s Freedom Mobile wireless business, which critics argue would reduce the number of competitors in the telecommunications industry to four. will be reduced to three and prices for consumers will be increased.

Independent Internet service providers TekSavvy and Telco Globalive have been the most vocal in slamming the deal, primarily arguing that the pre-conditional sale of Freedom to Videotron is based on illegal wholesale agreements.

talking to cbcTechSavvy’s vice-president of regulatory and carrier affairs, Andy Kaplan-Mith, said the merger would allow Quebecor to provide internet service across Canada through Freedom Mobile’s existing network, creating major difficulties for companies like TechSavvy.

Globalive also recently said that the deal between Rogers and Videotron would have a negative impact on its re-entry into the wireless market.

“In its haste to overcome the Competition Act, it appears that Rogers has violated the Telecommunications Act. We are looking for the ‘most favorable rates’ Rogers has offered Videotron to all competitors, Globallive founder Anthony Lacavera said in a linkedin post,

New Democratic Party leader Jagmeet Singh also urged Champagne to reject the merger, saying the deal “is expected to make our cell and internet bills more expensive.”

Meanwhile, Rogers and Quebecor are reportedly discussing Options to reduce how much Freedom Mobile customers are charged for roaming on the Rogers network.

The merging parties are hoping to win Champagne’s approval with the move, which came right in the form of Innovation, Science and Economic Development Canada (ISED). Policy Direction to CRTCPlacing value on competition, affordability, consumer rights and innovation.

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