Vodafone, Wind Hellas merger abandoned; exploring partnership alternatives

6 Feb 2012

UK-based Vodafone Group and Largo, the holding company of Greek cellco Wind Hellas, have ‘agreed to terminate discussions relating to a potential business combination between Vodafone Greece and Wind Hellas,’ the British mobile giant said in a statement this morning, as reported by Bloomberg. The proposed merger of the second- and third-largest Greek cellular network operators was called off after facing the likelihood of opposition from European Union anti-monopoly regulators, as it would have consolidated Greece’s mobile market down to two players with approximately 50% shares, led marginally by Cosmote, the cellular arm of incumbent national PSTN operator OTE. TeleGeography notes that a merger would also have given Vodafone Greece a leg-up in the broadband and fixed line segments by combining with Wind’s well-established fixed network division (formerly known as Tellas), and building on the UK-backed firm’s existing partnership with broadband operator Hellas Online to mount a serious challenge to OTE in the full-service telco field. Vodafone and Wind Hellas are now exploring alternative partnership strategies including sharing network infrastructure, according to local media reports.

Greece, Vodafone Greece, Wind Hellas