Telecom companies challenge merger ban

Orange and Sunrise have decided to fight the merger ban imposed upon them by Switzerland’s competition commission.

This content was published on May 20, 2010 - 16:20

The two telecommunications companies have filed an appeal with the federal administrative court, a spokeswoman for Orange told the Swiss News Agency on Thursday.

The Swiss foundation for consumer protection has expressed its dismay.

In a statement issued on Thursday, the foundation described Orange and Sunrise as stubborn for failing to consider the welfare of consumers.

In April the competition commission blocked the planned merger, arguing that the company resulting from the deal would have a dominant position in the mobile telephone market alongside rival Swisscom.

Swisscom’s history goes back to 1852, when the first public telegraph service opened between St Gallen and Zurich.

With 55.2 per cent of Swisscom's share capital, the Swiss government has a majority holding in Swisscom.

Sunrise, formerly known as Newtelco, came onto the Swiss market in 1996. It belongs to the Danish telecoms operator TDC.

Orange Switzerland, which belongs to France Télécom, followed suit in 1999.

swissinfo.ch and agencies

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