Under the agreement, Vodafone will acquire Unitymedia in Germany, as well
as UPC Czech, UPC Hungary and UPC Romania. The deal will help it become the
leading next-generation network owner in Europe, the company told Reuters,
with a total reach of 110 million homes and businesses.
Following the deal, Vodafone Group will become the leading
telecommunications company in Europe, leaving in its wake the previous
biggest player, Deutsche Telecom.
The transaction still needs to get the European Commission’s regulatory
approval and it is likely to be challenged by Deutsche Telecom on the
grounds that it curbs competition.
According to the head of the Czech branch of Vodafone, Petr Dvořák, the
approval process is expected to take from one to six months.
The Czech branch of Vodafone is primarily active in mobile markets, while
UPC mainly provides cable broadband and television services. At the moment,
UPC provides internet and cable tv for over 600,000 people in the Czech
With nearly four million customers, Vodafone is currently the smallest of
the three main mobile operators in the Czech Republic, behind T-Mobile and
However, the acquisition of UPC, which will enable its customers to access
mobile, broadband and TV services in one package, is likely to dramatically
change the situation on the Czech market by boosting Vodafone’s potential