Telenet in talks to use Voo network to expand reach

Flemish cable operator Telenet has confirmed it is in talks with Orange Belgium to use the Voo cable network in the French-speaking part of the country to extend its reach, following press reports that the pair were in discussions.

“Following the publication of a press article regarding the acquisition of the Walloon cable operator Voo by Orange on Wednesday, November 2, Telenet Group Holding SA confirms that it is in discussions with Orange concerning possible future network access on the VOO Network,” the company said.

“Telenet and Orange have entered into a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) that will structure further negotiations on this.

Telenet will not further comment on these negotiations pending the outcome thereof,” Telenet added.

The move follows Orange’s deal to acquire 75% minus one share in Voo, announced in January.

VOO’s owner Nethys will retain a minority stake in the operator and its governance rights

VOO owns the cable network in the Walloon region and part of the Brussels region. It offers fixed and mobile services, along with broadband and pay TV.

The EC is currently probing the acquisition amid concerns that the deal may reduce competition in the retail markets for the supply of fixed internet services, audio-visual services and multi-play bundles including fixed-mobile convergent services in parts of Belgium.

Voo had earlier been targeted for acquisition by Telenet itself and part-owner Liberty Global to create a national-scale player in the country.

Speaking at a Morgan Stanley conference in 2020, Liberty CEO Mike Fries said that there could be other ways to get into the Wallonian market, but noted that the acquisition of Voo would be the first choice.

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