Makan Delrahim, Assistant Attorney General for the Department of Justice’s Antitrust Division, joined Hogan Lovells partner and former Federal Trade Commission Chairwoman Edith Ramirez to discuss the role of antitrust law in an age of media and technology convergence.
I’m currently watching a wonderful new show called “The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel,” on Amazon Prime. It’s a comedy about a recent divorcee in Manhattan in the early 1960s who decides to become a stand-up comedian. As I’m watching the show my thoughts drift to the magnitude of difference between the fictitious Midge Maisel watching Bob Newhart on her 1960s-era television and my present day Sunday night viewing experience.
In the first major transaction approval under Ajit Pai’s Chairmanship, the Federal Communications Commission (“FCC”) recently approved, subject to targeted, transaction-specific conditions, license and authorization transfers in connection with CenturyLink’s $34 billion acquisition of Level 3. The FCC’s recitation of its merger review standard in its order (the “CenturyLink-Level 3 Order”) differed somewhat from the description of the standard used in recent transactions reviewed during the Obama administration. The Commissioners’ separate statements debated whether the new formulation merely clarified the FCC’s existing standard or constituted a substantial alteration of the
On May 10, 2016, the Federal Communications Commission (“FCC”) released its Memorandum Opinion and Order approving Charter Communications Inc.’s (“Charter”) acquisition of Time Warner Cable Inc. The merged entity, called “New Charter,” will be the second-largest broadband provider with 19.4 million users, and the third-largest cable television provider with 17.4 million customers. The approval of the merger, however, did not come without restrictions. In its over 300-page order, the FCC imposes several behavioral conditions on New Charter, including: Requiring New Charter to interconnect with qualifying companies on a settlement-free basis; Preventing New Charter
This week’s intervention by the Competition and Markets Authority in the ongoing, hard-fought review of CK Hutchison’s bid for O2 UK supports the views already expressed by the EU competition commissioner and reflects a closeness of interaction between European regulators. But this closeness could disappear if the UK votes to leave the EU in June. The review of the deal is being conducted by the European Commission under the EU Merger Regulation. The Merger Regulation applies to transactions meeting high thresholds based mainly on the worldwide and EU-wide turnover of
Personal data is an important aspect of most M&A transactions because almost all businesses store information about their employees and customers. For some deals, data is critical, and there is a trend among regulators on a global scale to increase sanctions over data privacy and security violations. There is also a risk that data protection violations may render a deal null and void. Click here to view our Data protection in M&A transactions: A how-to guide, as published in our Global Media and Communications Quarterly.
The media industry is obsessed with disruption. The news media have been going through a decade and a half of decline — most notably in advertising revenues — that has caused many bankruptcies and also a rethink of how media organizations organize their businesses. And despite all of this, new entrants abound. In the business world, disruption is a catch-cry; something that business leaders live in fear of. To the antitrust lawyer, it may actually sound like a familiar process whereby monopoly power is undone by an entry into the
EDITOR’S NOTE: We are excited to present this entry in our new TMT2020 series, which reflects the key technology, media, and telecoms legal issues that are expected to impact today’s organizations and tomorrow’s marketplace. It also provides an opportunity to highlight contributions by TMT associates across our global offices and practice areas. Looking to get your deal cleared in the U.S.? Point to a disruptive technology or innovative new entrant as evidence that current market shares are not indicative of the combined company’s future significance. Easy clearance in less than
According to the news service mlex, on 27 February 2014 the European Commission adopted a formal Statement of Objections against the Spanish operator Telefónica’s plan to buy E-plus of Germany, laying out concerns that deal could harm competition and lead to price increases. The contents of the Statement of Objections are not yet publicly available, and EC spokesman Antoine Colombani stressed that it marked only ”a preliminary step in an in-depth merger investigation”. The parties will have an opportunity to respond to the Commission’s objections and to request a hearing.
Panelists at the Winnik International Telecoms & Internet Forum expect immense merger and acquisition activity in developing markets around the globe, but predict little near-term M&A activity in the United States, where substantial consolidation has already occurred, or Europe, where logistical and business constraints affect consolidation opportunities. John Krzywicki, partner at Analysys Mason, explained that there is significant international M&A activity in the telecommunications sector. In the wireless market, there are simply too many operators that cannot achieve enough scale to be sufficiently profitable, with the fourth largest operators globally