TIM/Open Fiber merger would be ‘backward step’ regulator says

22 Jul 2019

Angelo Cardani, head of Italy’s Communications Regulatory Authority (Autorita per le Garanzie nelle Comunicazioni, Agcom), says a single national fibre network in the hands of Telecom Italia (TIM) would be a ‘backward step’. TIM is in negotiations with wholesale network operator Open Fiber, which could see the latter firm merged into TIM. A report from Reuters cites Cardani as saying: ‘Should the incumbent [TIM] control the new entity it would not just be a big U-turn but also a backward step.’ He added that any deal which creates a monopoly would reduce the benefits of competition. A tie-up between TIM and Open Fiber would have to be cleared by Agcom and Italy’s Competition Authority (Autorita Garante della Concorrenza e del Mercato, AGCM).