For the next three years, the Netherlands Authority for Consumers and Markets (ACM) wants Dutch telecom company KPN to continue to grant various providers such as Tele2, Vodafone and Online access to its copper and fiber-optic networks. This has been revealed in ACM’s analysis of the telecommunication markets, which has been published today. Competition between various providers is thus made possible. Consumers and businesses continue to be able to choose between different providers on the fixed-telecommunication network, and to benefit from faster and cheaper telecommunication services. If ACM were not to step in, there would be too little choice: Dutch telecom company KPN and cable company UPC/Ziggo would then dominate the market. In ACM’s opinion, having just two providers on these markets cannot be considered healthy competition.
Henk Don, Member of the Board of ACM, explains: “Thanks to competition on the telecommunication networks, consumers and businesses annually save at least EUR 250 million because prices for telecommunication services remain competitive. Furthermore, KPN and UPC/Ziggo are challenged by their competitors to continue to invest in their networks and to innovate. As a result, faster and better connections become available in the Netherlands.”
Different networks, plenty to choose from
Following the merger between cable providers UPC and Ziggo, and the acquisition of fiber-optic company Reggefiber by KPN, two major networks exist in the Netherlands on which consumers are able to go online, watch television, and make calls: UPC/Ziggo’s cable network and KPN’s copper and fiber-optic network. Competition from other providers is thus made possible on KPN’s network.
KPN has a strong position in the business market for fixed-telephony services and business connectivity services. After all, industrial parks usually do not have any coaxial cable. That fact alone is reason enough to force KPN to allow other providers access to its network.
In addition, it is not possible to offer the same access to Ziggo’s cable network as to KPN’s copper and fiber-optic networks. Whereas other providers have the possibility of offering their own products on KPN’s network, this can only be facilitated to a very limited extent on UPC/Ziggo’s network. Access to KPN’s network is enough to make competition in the consumer market possible.
The access requirements for KPN will be adjusted in such a way that it will be able to modernize its own network further, and to compete effectively with UPC/Ziggo.
KPN is allowed to acquire Reggefiber
KPN invests in fiber-optic through, for example, fiber-optic company Reggefiber. ACM has decided to clear the full acquisition of Reggefiber by KPN. As a result of the measures following the market analysis, KPN must continue to allow other parties to offer consumers and businesses access on this network as well. That is why no additional conditions have been imposed.