UK-based international mobile operator Vodafone has confirmed that it is in talks with the Liberty Global Group concerning a possible joint venture in the Netherlands. Vodafone’s local unit is the second largest player in the Dutch mobile market, while Liberty Global owns the largest Dutch cable TV operator, Ziggo/UPC. There were discussions last year over a wider European merger between the two groups, though talks broke down over the valuation of assets. A Vodafone statement read: ‘The discussions are ongoing and do not extend beyond the creation of a joint venture in the Netherlands.’
Vodafone has attempted to carve a niche for itself in the Dutch broadband sector but has complained of anti-competitive behaviour from incumbent operator KPN. CommsUpdate reported last month that Vodafone is suing KPN for EUR115 million (USD130 million) damages for hampering its attempts to enter the fixed telephony, internet and pay-TV markets by allegedly restricting access to its networks between 2011 and 2014.