Cellcom eyes Golan merger to stymie rival tie-up

Cellcom eyes Golan merger to stymie rival tie-up

Israel’s Cellcom has reportedly approached Golan Telecom over the possibility of a merger, posing a threat to the mooted tie-up between Altice Europe’s Hot Mobile and Partner Communications.

At the end of last month, Hot Mobile made an offer for a 100% takeover of Partner Communications. If the bid is approved, Altice would significantly strengthen its footprint in Israel, enabling it to compete more effectively with Cellcom.

According to business news outlet Globes, this development prompted Cellcom to approach domestic rival Golan Telecom, with the expectation that the country’s Competition Authority and Ministry of Communications would only clear one merger.

The regulators would likely be more amenable to an agreement between Cellcom and Golan as the resulting entity would be far smaller – and therefore less likely to dominate the market – than a merger between Hot Mobile and Partner Communications. Additionally, Cellcom and Golan already have a network-sharing arrangement in place.

However, a 2015 attempt by Cellcom to acquire Golan was blocked by regulators on the grounds that it would reduce the amount of competition in the market.

Sign-up to our weekly newsletter

Keep up-to-date with all the latest news, articles, event and product updates posted on Developing Telecoms.
Subscribe to our FREE weekly email newsletters for the latest telecom info in developing and emerging markets globally.
Sending occasional e-mail from 3rd parties about industry white papers, online and live events relevant to subscribers helps us fund this website and free weekly newsletter. We never sell your personal data. Click here to view our privacy policy.