Communications minister approves Cellcom-Golan merger

Avi Gabbay / Photo: Cadya Levy, Globes

The deal, which will create Israel's largest mobile telephony group, is expected to close in the next few days.

Minister of Communications Yoaz Hendel has given approval to the takeover of Golan Telecom by Cellcom Israel Ltd. (NYSE:CEL; TASE:CEL), headed by Aviv Gabbay, in accordance with the conditions set by the ministry. The parties are expected to complete the deal within the next few days. The ministry said the minister's approval came after a thorough, in-depth examination of the deal, and on the recommendation of the ministry's professional staff.

Among the conditions set are that terms of service to Golan Telecom must be preserved. The Ministry of Communications does not believe that the merger will detract from competition in the mobile telephony market, and says that it will continue to act to maintain a level playing field enabling fair competition between the various players in the market.

The deal has been approved by the Competition Authority and is supported by the Ministry of Finance. The Ministry of Communications acceded to Cellcom's request that Golan Telecom should remain a virtual carrier and an active player in the market under Cellcom's wing.

The merged company will be the largest in Israel's mobile market, with some 3.6 million subscribers. Cellcom will now have to decide how to merge the companies' operations and how to coordinate marketing.

Cellcom will pay Electra Consumer Products a total of up to NIS 750 million for Golan Telecom. "Golan Telecom will continue to be an independent and competitive player, and will continue to be as attractive as it has been up to now," Gabbay said.

Published by Globes, Israel business news - en.globes.co.il - on August 13, 2020

© Copyright of Globes Publisher Itonut (1983) Ltd. 2020

Avi Gabbay / Photo: Cadya Levy, Globes
Avi Gabbay / Photo: Cadya Levy, Globes
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