PARIS (Reuters) -Liberty Global’s Telenet on Thursday said it was in talks with France’s No. 1 telecoms company Orange over a potential network access to Walloon cable operator VOO, which Orange plans to acquire.
The companies have reached a memorandum of understanding which will structure further negotiations, Telenet said in a statement. Orange was not immediately available for comment.
Orange last year announced its plans to buy a majority stake in the Belgian fixed line business from Nethys in a deal which then valued the firm at 1.8 billions euros.
The planned purchase – currently under European Union anti-trust review – would give Orange control over the cable network in Belgium’s French speaking Walloon region and part of the Brussels area.
The new network deal is aimed at alleviating competition concerns in the midst of the EU probe, sources said. The European Commission last week paused its investigation while awaiting for data from Orange.
The announced acquisition of 75% in VOO dealt a blow to Orange Belgium’s local rival Telenet, which had not been selected to enter into talks.
(Reporting by Piotr Lipinski and Mathieu Rosemain; writing by Tassilo Hummel and Marine Strauss; editing by Sudip Kar-Gupta and Jason Neely)