The Competition Bureau says it has filed an application to block Rogers Communications Inc. from buying Shaw Communications Inc., saying the transaction would result in higher prices, poorer service quality and fewer options, especially in wireless services.
The bureau on Monday challenged the $26 billion acquisition and asked the competition tribunal to stop it from going ahead. The bureau says it is also requesting an injunction to prevent the parties from closing the deal until its application is heard.
The federal regulator alleges that removing Shaw as a competitor threatens to undo the progress it has made in introducing more competition in the wireless services market, where Rogers, Bell and Telus serve about 87 percent of Canada’s customers. We do.
The Bureau’s investigation determined that the proposed acquisition would eliminate “an established, independent and under-priced” competitor in the Shaw-owned Freedom Mobile. It says it will also prevent other competition in wireless services in Ontario, Alberta and British Columbia and suppress further competition in areas including 5G.
“The Competition Bureau conducted a rigorous investigation of the proposed Rogers-Shaw merger and concluded that it would substantially prevent or reduce competition in wireless services,” Competition Commissioner Matthew Boswell said in a statement. “Eliminating Shaw will remove a strong, independent competitor in the Canadian wireless market – one that has lowered prices, made data more accessible, and provided innovative services to our customers. We are an essential We are taking action to block this merger in order to maintain competition and choice for the service, which Canadians hope is affordable and of high quality.