Sutel greenlights Tigo acquisitions

3 Sep 2018

Sector watchdog the Superintendency of Telecommunications (Superintendencia de Telecomunicaciones, Sutel) has approved the takeover of regional cablecos Cable Television Doble – which operates under the Cable Max brand – and Cable Zarcero by Tigo Costa Rica, El Financiero reports. In its decision, Sutel noted that acquisitions would not ‘produce adverse results for end users’. The regulator acknowledged, however, that the Commission for the Promotion of Competition (Comision para Promover la Competencia, Coprocom) had warned that Tigo’s merger with Zarcero would concentrate market share in at least one canton.

Cable Zarcero’s operations are concentrated in Los Chiles, Guatuso, Sarapiqui and Garabito, whilst Cable Max serves the Abangares, Bagaces, Canas, Liberia, Tilaran and Perez Zeledon areas.

As noted by TeleGeography’s GlobalComms Database, Tigo’s bid to acquire rival cableco Telecable Economico in late 2014 was shot down by Sutel in April the following year on the basis that it would reduce competition in the pay-TV market. The operator went on to say in February 2017 that it was considering other potential acquisition targets, but refused to name them at the time.

Costa Rica, Millicom Cable Costa Rica (Tigo), Superintendencia de Telecomunicaciones (Sutel)