The shareholders and boards of German ISP freenet.de and Germany’s largest mobile operator mobilcom agreed yesterday to merge the two companies in a deal valued at EUR1.8 billion. The new company will be Germany’s second largest full service provider behind the incumbent Deutsche Telekom, with a portfolio of fixed line, broadband and wireless services. The merger will take effect on 1 September this year, when current mobilcom head Thomas Grenz will leave and Eckhard Spoerr – CEO of freenet.de – will become CEO of the merged group; the company’s headquarters will be in Büdelsdorf.
freenet.de is already part of the mobilcom group, but has existed as a separate company since mobilcom spun off its internet subsidiary and related fixed line operations. With the reintegration of freenet.de, mobilcom has emulated the strategies of Deutsche Telekom, France Télécom and Telefónica, all of which have now reintegrated their internet divisions.