Court rejects Yes-Bezeq merger

By Julian Clover

Israel’s Supreme Court has rejected plans by the telco Bezeq to merge its operations with those of its DTH satellite platform Yes.
Bezeq was looking to increase its stake in Yes to 58% from the present 49.8% in line with conditions set out by the Israeli anti-trust authority.

However, the Supreme Court accepted petitions from the anti-trust authority and Yes minority shareholder Eurocom Group against a Restrictive Trade Practices Tribunal that would have permitted the takeover, with conditions.

The ruling leaves the door open to a potential counterbid from Eurocom, which currently holds 30% of Yes, to acquire a controlling interest in the satellite platform. There are also implications for IPTV with Beseq previously stating that it would not further build out its network if the Yes bid were allowed to proceed.

The DTH operation could have formed part of a Bezeq triple play offer that would have been able to compete with the offer already in place from cabler HOT.