The Spanish regulator CNMC has fined Telefónica €5 million for failing to comply with some of the obligations it undertook when acquiring the pay-TV operator DTS (the former Sogecable) in order to preserve competition in the market.
In a statement, CNMC say that in July 2020 it extended the commitments for three years “with the aim of continuing to preserve competition in the markets affected by the aforementioned acquisition; among others, the pay television market and the electronic communications market”.
It adds: “Among the obligations breached are those related to the information that Telefónica has to send so that it is possible to analyse the effective replicability of the retail commercial offers that include their own premium channels in their wholesale pay-TV offer.
“In the commitments, Telefónica undertook to make an offer of premium channels available to operators at prices that allow its competitors to replicate their offers and be competitive. To guarantee the effectiveness of this obligation and that these offers do not incur a squeeze on margins, Telefónica also undertook to periodically send the CNMC information on the offers it launches on the market”.
CNMC notes that it initiated sanctioning because Telefónica failed to provide information, essential to verify compliance with its commitment (2.9). This guarantees that the wholesale offer by which Telefónica makes premium channels available to third parties has conditions that allow effective replicability by third parties in their retail offers that include said channels. However, it was not provided between May 2015 and at least June 2020.
CNMC says that Telefónica can appeal the decision before the National High Court within two months from the day of its notification. The resolution was approved with the individual vote of two directors.