According to business daily Ziarul Financiar (ZF), Romania Cable Systems (RCS&RDS) has expressed concerns that market leader by subscribers RomTelecom will hijack its bid to acquire cableco UPC Romania from US group Liberty Global Inc (LGI). Citing an unnamed source close to RCS&RDS, ZF reported: ‘RCS&RDS is considering the possibility of RomTelecom entering talks to take over UPC’. A second source added: ‘It is to be expected that RomTelecom would become involved, as well, at least to boost the price a little and to find out the details of the transaction’. A price-tag of around USD300 million was mooted for UPC Romania late last month.
According to TeleGeography’s GlobalComms Database, at end-December 2010 RCS&RDS was Romania’s second largest broadband provider by subscribers, with a 24.2% market share, narrowly behind fixed line incumbent RomTelecom (30.3%). UPC Romania is the third-placed operator by subscribers with a 7.7% market share. If the acquisition goes through as planned, RCS&RDS will see its enlarged subscriber base narrowly overtake market leader RomTelecom.