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Rogers Shaw merger involving Quebecor: Federal appeals court seeks to overturn deal

Court seeks to challenge Rogers and Shaw merger involving Quebecor Julius Conley ★★★★★

The Competition Agency is asking a federal appeals court to overturn a Competition Tribunal decision that rejected its lawsuit against Rogers Communications' $26 billion takeover of Shaw Communications.

The federal antitrust regulator argues that the tribunal erred in evaluating the deal and the offer, under which Quebecor subsidiary Videotron would also acquire Shaw's existing Freedom Mobile business.

On appeal, the regulator argues that the tribunal committed fundamental legal errors.

In its decision last week, the Competition Tribunal found that the merger was unlikely to raise prices for wireless customers and that it was satisfied that the plan to sell Freedom Mobile was sufficient to ensure that competition would not be significantly reduced.

The Competition Agency said Monday that a federal appeals court granted it an emergency stay that temporarily suspends the Competition Tribunal's dismissal of its complaint against Rogers' takeover of Shaw. The agency added that the stay will remain in effect until its application for a stay and injunction is heard.

If the court's decision is approved after the appeal is heard, only the approval of Federal Minister of Industry Francois-Philippe Champagne would be required to proceed with the merger. François-Philippe Champagne said he would not issue a ruling until after the current litigation is cleared up.

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