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MarketScreener Homepage  >  Equities  >  London Stock Exchange  >  BT Group plc    BT.A   GB0030913577

BT GROUP PLC

(BT.A)
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Delayed Quote. Delayed London Stock Exchange - 05/29 11:35:03 am
116.25 GBX   -2.11%
05/28Hutchison wins legal challenge to EU veto on O2 takeover
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05/20BT GROUP : Deutsche Bank drops its Sell rating
MD
05/18BT : Clare Chapman appointed Chair of Acas
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Hutchison wins legal challenge to EU veto on O2 takeover

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05/28/2020 | 11:20am EDT
FILE PHOTO: A sign hangs outside an O2 mobile phone shop in central London

By Foo Yun Chee

CK Hutchison Holdings Ltd has won a victory against an EU antitrust decision blocking its 10.3 billion pound bid to buy O2 UK from Spain's Telefonica in 2016.

Thursday's ruling by the Luxembourg-based General Court marks a rare setback for the European Commission's competition watchdog but will cheer a telecoms industry seeking a looser rein on mergers aimed at sharing heavy 5G investments.

Hutchison welcomed the court ruling, criticising regulators for a "misconceived default view" on four-to-three telecoms mergers, which it said had put a brake on consolidation in the sector.

Retired billionaire Li Ka-shing's Hutchinson conglomerate had aimed to become Britain's biggest mobile telecoms network operator by combining its Three UK with O2 to compete against BT's EE and Vodafone.

The 2016 deal, however, raised red flags with EU competition enforcers, wary of telecoms mergers that reduce the number of players from four to three and could push up prices. Hutchison subsequently appealed the EU veto.

The General Court annulled the EU ruling, saying the watchdog had failed to prove that the merged company would harm competition or raise prices.

Judges also said the Commission had confused several concepts and "considerably widened the scope of the rules on concentrations of undertakings and distorted the concept of important competitive force".

The Commission said it would analyse the judgment before deciding whether to appeal at Europe's highest court, the EU Court of Justice.

The judgment marks a resounding victory for Hutchison and the entire European mobile telecoms industry and possibly the most important over the last 15 years over mergers, said Douglas Lahnborg, an antitrust partner at law firm Orrick.

"This raises the bar for the Commission to prohibit four-to -three transactions, not only in the mobile industry but also other sectors," he said.

(Reporting by Foo Yun Chee; Editing by David Goodman and Lisa Shumaker)

Stocks mentioned in the article
ChangeLast1st jan.
BT GROUP PLC -2.11% 116.25 Delayed Quote.-39.59%
CK HUTCHISON HOLDINGS LIMITED -1.76% 47.4 End-of-day quote.-36.20%
TELEFONICA S.A. -2.24% 4.241 End-of-day quote.-31.89%
VODAFONE GROUP PLC -0.83% 133.02 Delayed Quote.-9.36%
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Financials
Sales 2021 21 740 M 26 845 M 26 845 M
Net income 2021 1 644 M 2 029 M 2 029 M
Net Debt 2021 17 716 M 21 876 M 21 876 M
P/E ratio 2021 7,39x
Yield 2021 -
Capitalization 11 401 M 14 072 M 14 078 M
EV / Sales 2020
EV / Sales 2021 1,34x
Nbr of Employees 105 300
Free-Float 86,8%
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Technical analysis trends BT GROUP PLC
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TrendsNeutralBearishBearish
Income Statement Evolution
Consensus
Sell
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Mean consensus OUTPERFORM
Number of Analysts 21
Average target price 168,15 GBp
Last Close Price 116,25 GBp
Spread / Highest target 158%
Spread / Average Target 44,6%
Spread / Lowest Target -39,6%
EPS Revisions
Managers
NameTitle
Philip Eric Rene Jansen Chief Executive Officer & Executive Director
Jan Petrus du Plessis Chairman
Simon Jonathan Lowth Chief Financial Officer & Executive Officer
Howard Watson Chief Technology & Information Officer
Nicholas Charles Rose Senior Independent Non-Executive Director
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